Romeo Antoniazzi cello, Milan circa 1885
Romeo Antoniazzi (1862-1925) was from a long line of accomplished luthiers, Cremona's Antoniazzi family, which is at the heart of 20th-century violin making in Italy. He was taught by his father Gaetano and older brother Riccardo, with whom he worked at the shop of Leandro Bisiach. Throughout his career, he alternated working alone and for several firms, including Barlassina and Monzino in Milan, where he ultimately settled. He taught many apprentices while continuing to build his own instruments, some of which won awards in international exhibitions held in Paris and Turin.
He was known to use various labels and varnishes which ranged from light yellow-orange to dark brown. His instruments, which have become highly coveted and widely copied, were characterized by their spontaneity.