Bow Expert

Master lecturer and expert with the ‘Court of Appeal’ (Paris’ Court),
Jean-François Raffin is also co-author of a reference book entitled “The Bow”.

Jean-François Raffin first studied violinmaking in Mirecourt in 1969. After a year of apprenticeship with Etienne Vatelot, he then perfected the art of bowmaking with restoration, creation and bow expertise with Bernard Millant. He was Millant’s assistant for 17 years.

Recipient of a silver medal with the ‘Competition of the Best Craftsmen of France’, in 1979, he has already acquired a strong knowledge of his craft. The same year, he became a member of the association ‘Luthiers and Archetiers de France’ (violinmakers and bowmakers association). He soon after became a member of ‘The International Violin Makers’ Association’. All these years of apprenticeship gave him the desire to open his own establishment in Paris.

As a master in  his craft, Raffin shares his knowledge worldwide. . In 1992 as a master educator, he gave a lecture in Colmar for the French and German association of violinmakers, followed by many other lectures throughout the world. In March 1993 and 1994, he conducted workshops at the Quebec city violinmaking school ‘Elan’. Since 1996 Jean-François Raffin has been an expert with the Cour d’appel de Paris (Paris Court).

Jean-François Raffin and Bernard Millant (assisted by Bernard Gaudfroy for the historical portion) have made an important reference book titled L’Archet (The Bow), in 3 volumes, dedicated to the French School of Bowmaking in mid 18th century. 116 bowmakers are represented and their production studied in depth.