The Work of Art: Bernard Allen - Fiddle and Mandolin

Bernard Allen applies his love of Ozark hand woodworking methods to instrument making, primarily fiddles and mandolins. Here, Allen holds a fiddle with a natural finish that allows the beauty of the wood to stand alone. Allen uses the curled ƒ-holes (visible here and on many of the exhibition's instruments) as a tuning mechanism during the construction process, blowing across the holes with his mouth and gently shaving the bass bar until the instrument is tuned to F. The paired curled ƒ-holes allow sound to vibrate more freely.