For many years, we have closely followed and admired the work of French luthier Bastien Burlot who has built guitars for the likes of Roland Dyens and Thomas Viloteau. However, it is with his most recent project – which he is calling "Alkemia" that we are really enthusiastic. Bastien is building a series of guitars with rosettes inspired by the great cathedrals of France. This is his first model in the series, and is based on Chartres Cathedral, which is located about an hour outside of Paris by train. The mosaic designs in the rosette are taken directly from the stained-glass windows of the church itself. In addition, the label has a labyrinth design which comes from the floor of the cathedral’s nave, a famous gathering spot of pilgrims from around the world who walk the labyrinth with their heads bowed in pious reverence. The even deeper meaning behind this to Bastien is that to him, these great cathedrals act as "bridges between the profane, material world and a more sacred one." It is this ideal that he is bringing into the construction of each one of the "Alkemia" guitars - indeed each guitar is intended to be a portal where the player can enter into the sublime and mysterious world of music. Fit and finish are extremely clean for this maker and the sonic and expressive qualities of the guitar are as impressive as its design. We are pleased to at last be offering such an interesting and elegant instrument from this creative and well-respected luthier and look forward to his next - Strasbourg!
Photos of this guitar taken during construction.