German Pipemakers & Friends - Rheinbach 2007

After a successful start at the German Pipemakers and Estate Show in August last year, Achim Frank is now preparing the German Pipemakers & Friends Show 2007, which will take place on 4th and 5th of August in the municipal hall of Rheinbach (Stadthalle Rheinbach).

WA: In contrast to last year's show, more pipemakers from abroad are attending this year, and the title of the show has been adapted accordingly. What prompted you to make this decision?
AF: I think we mustn't see the German scene in isolation. The influence from Denmark in particular can't be overlooked. So we want to show a wider range of hand-made pipes and put Scandinavia, America and Italy into the context they share with Germany.

WA: Isn't that kind of like taking bread out of the mouths of German free handers?
AF: No, our boys have not trouble withstanding international competition. The times of hiding behind the grand idols are definitely over. Next to the great ones from other countries, we will present the German carvers' independent and self-confident performance, and we will prove that German pipemakers have long staked their claim in the international scene.

WA: Which exhibitors will visitors encounter at the show?
AF: From Solingen, Frank Axmacher is joining us. That man has enhanced his vocabulary of styles in the past months and will surprise us with a number of courageous shapes. Rainer Barbi, who has received various awards and is THE German pipemaker with an international reputation, will of course be with us as well. In the international context, Paul Becker needs to be mentioned, too. Without much ado, Paul has been making his pipes with great dedication and in his own handwriting. Just have a closer look at his excellent mouth pieces. Many a critic will have to re-think their position on acrylic. His Italian namesake, Paolo Becker, will once again amaze visitors with is incredible pencil shanks. From Lohmar, Volker Bier is visiting us. While he seriously talks of himself as a "hobbyist maker of smoking devices", his pipes have attracted a large community of fans. Oliver Camphausen is known for making a good handful of a pipe, pipes for men who have grown out of S-sized T-shirts. Tom Eltang has been a friend of mine for many years, and we look forward to the Golden Contrast exhibits by that great Danish master. In Love Geiger we can present a young hopeful from Sweden. A style of his own and high-level craftmanship are things you cannot take for granted in a carver of his age. In 2004, I got to see Peter Heding's pipes in Chicago and added them to our catalogue right away. By those who like Danish pipes, Peter cannot be ignored. Marco Janzen from Hamburg has held countless pipes in his hands and released them from their state of damage. He is one of the best repairsmen and suppliers of pipemaking material in the world. We are able to present Cornelius Mänz, one of the most creative pipemakers. His ideas and his way of executing them make a collector's heart beat at a faster pace. Jürgen Moritz will show slim shapes that derive their lightness from his use of bamboo. Heiner Nonnenbroich, one of the most professional recent newcomers, has gained a lot of sense for style in the course of the past year. Hans Günter Noske represents the classic line in the show's program: top quality combined with no-frills elegance. From the Saarland, Axel Reichert is coming to enthuse us with innovative shapes that have been considered impossible before. The friends of morta (bog oak) pipes and of smaller shapes will find something to their taste on Tom Richard's table. Bertram Safferling is one of the most senior pipemakers. He is also well known for his sophisticated pipe cases. Young Dane Lasse Skovgaard's pipes captivate us through the way they advance Danish classicism, and through a special sandblasting technique. We are pleased to present him to a wider audience. The grand Italian pipemaking tradition is represented by Bruto Sordini and his Don Carlos brand. American pipemaker Trever Talbert, who lives in France, has made morta pipes famous around the world.

WA: That's an impressive list of exhibitors. How do you manage to gather all these people at one place for the same weekend?
AF: Like last year, this doesn't take any long begging. They all love coming to Rheinbach and look forward to meeting their customers. But communication among each other is also an important issue to them. Many friends were made last year.

WA: Last year, you had the little word "Estate" in the title of the show, but this year it's missing. Does that mean there won't be any used pipes?
AF: Of course there will. The estate market won't just be a minor segment. We changed the title to point out the international character of this year's show.

Opening hours: Saturday, 10 a.m. till 5 p.m., Sunday: 10 a.m. till 3 p.m., Admission for one day: 3 Euros, for both days: 5 Euros. Hotel rooms can be booked at special rates at Achim Frank at will be pleased to assist with any further questions.

For a French version of this text, see

Addendum (8th May, 2007):
Hans "Former" Nielsen and Nanna Ivarsson from Denmark have announced they will exhibit at the show.




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