Gennaro (or Januarius in the Latin form, found on his labels) was the son of Alessandro Gagliano, and a very fine maker in his own right. Like his brother Nicolò, he was more orthodox and classical in his style than his father and very versatile in imitating Cremonese makers.
Gennaro was perhaps the most varied and gifted craftsman of the Gagliano family and was at his peak in the middle of the eighteenth century. In his work he used many patterns, mostly based on Amati and Stradivari examples, accurately finished and generally more attentive to detail than other Neapolitan makers.
This violin is a magnificent instrument bearing a label dated 1732. It is extraordinary because it still retains its original baroque neck, which is not so commonly seen. The arching is characteristic of the maker, the wood flawless and the orange varnish tinted with a particularly reflective gold-toned ground layer.