Joseph Regh’s success as a bow and instrument maker is due to his artistic talents as well as meticulous, detail-oriented, scientific approach and methods. In addition to perfecting his skills as a luthier, Joe has actively engaged in the measurement and study of materials and acoustics. It is his belief that only by studying and understanding as much as possible about great historic instruments (particularly those of the 16th, 17th and 18th century Italian craftsmen), and bows (generally of the 19th and 20th century) from the best makers can we hope to replicate their quality. In addition to studying the characteristics of fine bows and instruments, he also studied techniques for bow making and restoration, initially with master maker Joseph Kun, then with other leading luthiers associated with the Violin Society of America (VSA) and other organizations. He is the co-author of The Art of Bow Making with Joseph Kun and the author of The Art of Bow Restoration.
Academic and scientific excellence are not sufficient to achieve true artistry – as with any endeavor, it takes practice! To continuously expand on and sharpen his skills Joe has been and remains active as a professional luthier, teacher, mentor, and student of the art. He helps to coordinate and participates in annual luthier master classes – which attract fellow luthiers from around the world together for four weeks at the VSA-Oberlin workshops at Oberlin Conservatory. He teaches a two-week course in bow making at his shop in Poughkeepsie, NY.
In addition to knowledge and technique, it is necessary to have the best materials. Over the last 35 years Joe has acquired an extensive wood collection. As an innovative bow maker Joe has built his own specialized tools for making and measuring the qualities of bows. He keeps extensive records of bow measurements to help identify critical, measurable quantities that relate to bow quality and playability. He has also served as a designer to tool manufacturers. This attention to the details in technique, tools, and materials has yielded particularly good results in bow-making and Joseph Regh bows have become highly regarded among players.