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Belgian luthier Johannes T' Kindt in his workshop in Nigüelas. Pepe Marín
The Belgian luthier who sells flamenco guitars all over Spain
Culture

The Belgian luthier who sells flamenco guitars all over Spain

Johannes T' Kindt renews the Artisan Charter awarded by the Junta de Andalucía: "I chose Granada because it is a land of great masters"

Patricia V. Moreno

Granada

Wednesday, 17 April 2024, 09:10

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At the age of 16, Johannes had a clear idea of his future. His interests in carpentry and guitar making led him to start training as a luthier at the International School of Lutherie in Antwerp, Belgium. Three years after graduating he decided to study musical instrument restoration and began experimenting with different techniques and crafts in his student flat in Belgium.

Johannes T' Kindt was born on 2 September 1996 in a village near the city of Ghent, in East Flanders in the Flemish-speaking area of Belgium. At the age of 20 he left his native country to do an apprenticeship with British luthier Stephen Hill who lives and works in La Herradura, Granada province. It was at that point that Johannes decided he wanted to move to Spain and soon after, the musician moved all his equipment and tools to set up his own workshop in Dúrcal in Granada province.

"I chose Granada because of its Spanish guitars and because it is a land of great masters who have inspired me a lot", says the luthier, adding that guitar makers Antonio Marín and Manuel Bellido as well as the music and nature of the province are some of the reasons that made him settle here. "I have no intention of returning to Belgium, I only go there from time to time to visit my family," he says.

The luthier building a guitar.
The luthier building a guitar. Pepe Marín

Johannes currently lives in Nigüelas, a small village of barely a thousand inhabitants in the Lecrín valley where he bought a house dating from 1945, which he has since restored and converted into his home and workshop where he spends his days building his flamenco and classical guitars.

The classical guitars are inspired by Antonio de Torres, the past and present masters of Granada and José Luis Romanillos. With his flamenco guitars he is following in the footsteps of Santos Hernández and some other artists of the time.

International projection

The Belgian luthier has been awarded the Artisan Charter awarded by the Ministry of Employment, Enterprise and Self-Employment of the Andalusian Regional Government, the Junta de Andalucía for his dedication to the construction of his musical instruments. He first received the title in 2019.

The guitar maker sharpening chisels.
The guitar maker sharpening chisels. Pepe Marín

The Junta representative José Javier Martín Cañizares, who visited the workshop on Friday 5 January, emphasised "its distinctly artisan profile, reflected in his personal and direct intervention in the production process and in the final finish of the product". He also wanted to underline the fact that Johannes is helping to maintain a trade that is deeply rooted in the province and indeed Andalucía.

At just 27 years of age Johannes T' Kindt has made a name for himself as a guitar maker in the world of handcrafted guitar making, as the quality of his instruments shows. The doors of his workshop are open for those who are interested in visiting him. Appointments should be made by mobile phone or email. Click here for more information on Johannes and how to contact him.

What is the Andalusian artisan charter?

The craftsmanship charter in Andalusia is a document issued by the Junta de Andalucía with the aim of publicly identifying the condition of artisan subject. According to article 4 of Decree 475/2008 of 21 October, the requirements are: a) The performance of one or more craft activities included in the Directory of Craft Trades of the Autonomous Community of Andalusia. b) Provision of permanent premises for the performance of the craft activity or activities. c) In the case of registration of associations, federations and confederations, the statutes must include the promotion and defence of crafts as the main purpose. 2. Registration does not require a minimum period of time in the craft activity. 3. Entry in the Register does not exempt the persons concerned from the other permits, authorisations and registrations to which they are obliged in accordance with the legislation in force.

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