new instruments  
   
current projects
  viola for lisa wong
recent
  viola for anne black
innovations
  viola da braccio
    asymetrial viola
    viola cinque
     
 

About our instruments
We strive to produce a balanced, rich and focused sound -- a broad palette of possibilities with a very quick response -- to enable the player to easily reach his own sound ideal. 

Our instruments are original models designed with our own methods to achieve the particular sound and playability we are seeking.  Even with their classical dimensions and proportions, they are easily recognizable by our models, workmanship and varnish just as all the early makers were.
Since the early 1980’s our instruments have all been made from 200-300 year old spruce taken from centuries old farm houses in the Alps of Northern Italy.  We feel there is a special quality in the sound of this old wood that we could not get with regular spruce.  Wood changes in stiffness and other acoustical qualities quite a bit during the first hundred years as it ages making life difficult for violin makers.  The old spruce has stabilized enabling us to get a predictable sound quality.
Back in the old days, people in the mountains knew when to cut wood.  They cut the wood for their houses themselves at exactly the right time with the sap completely out, preventing warping and making the wood difficult to burn.  This happens to be perfect for musical instruments too.  Nowadays tone wood is cut year around and there is no way of telling how much sap was left in the wood.

Our varnish matures and wears in just a couple years to achieve the  burnished look of a fine instrument without any phony antiquing on our part.
Every instrument looks unique with the individual wear of its owner.

There is no risk in ordering a Moes instrument, we do not want anyone to have an instrument they do not enjoy playing.

On copies
Instrument making flourished until about the 19th century.  Around that time many makers decided they could only make a good new instrument by copying an old one.  The very makers they were and are copying did not work that way.  As the early makers gained insight and experience they changed their models and methods always hunting for their own perfect sound and look.  Copyists are literally painting by numbers, putting their attention in exactly the wrong direction and creating stiff soulless versions of previous maker’s work.  The monetary value of the old master instruments goes far beyond their value as a playing tool, it comes from the original artistic expression from the heart and soul of the maker. Copies express neither the heart and soul of the original nor that of the copyist.  They are somehow dead.  Furthermore, the fallacy in thinking, “if it looks like a Stradivarius it might sound like one”, has been proved over and over.  The sound of copies is never in the same class as the instruments they are copying, nor do copies have a voice of their own.     Copies of instruments, or anything else, never have and never will have any lasting intrinsic value.  How would we feel about Stradivari’s instruments if he had continued to make Amatis?  What if Guarneri had copied Stradivari?

 To be continued….