Well-known and respected German Pipe Artisan, Rainer Barbi passed away on May 23, 2011. He was diagnosed with cancer in January, and had several strokes in late-February, early-March.
According to Jörg Rolf Lehmann, "Rainer Barbi started with the production of pipes in 1974. He can therefore be regarded as the "senior" of the German freehand pipe makers, although he really has the spirit of a young person. I first met Rainer in 2001, when he hosted a presentation of his pipes in the city of Bünde, at Otto Pollner’s place, who was the grand-master of pipe-turners in Germany.
There is no doubt, Rainer is one of the very best pipe makers in the world today, which is very remarkable for someone who started out as an autodidact (self-taught). Barbi can be proud of his work, they are amongst the most popular pieces worldwide.
I like all the pipes of Barbi very much, without exception, a style of his own is unmistakable and the recognition value of a Barbi is great. Many of his pipes are finished very brightly and the grain contrast stands out more and more with use of the pipe."
We wish to express our deepest condolences to Barbi’s family and friends.