ANST - authenticity vs a

Mark Harris mark_harris at
Fri Aug 15 16:26:41 PDT 1997

Aquilanne said:

 We can strive towards recreating things as
authentically as we can, and reward those extra efforts in an A&S
competition; but to expect that the authenticity alone of a rough wooden box
or bowl should win out over an equally labor-intensive (even with modern
help) piece that is a good facsimile of period work *and* aesthetically
sound isn't in keeping with the whole concept of competing in *art*.

But this is part of my complaint. Are these pieces "good facsimile(s) of
period work"? Yes, they may approach that one item in the museum. But do
they match period work? The problem is that that one period piece may
not be representative of period work. There is a good chance that that
piece is not representative of the time it is from. That jewel-encrusted
sword was likely never used in combat. It was a gift that was put in a
storeroom for safe keeping. That was one of the reasons it survived. It
was never or seldom used. Should we be recreating these one of a kind
items or the daily items that had an impact on that time and on the daily
lifes of medieval people.

To try to bring a modern day perspective to this. Say it is the year 2500
and you are choosing items for a museum showing the 20th century. Which
are you more likely to have available, a DeLoren sports car that was
stored away and seldom driven and got the best of care or a Volkswagon
Beetle? Probably the DeLoren, but which one had the greatest effect 
upon the lives of the people in the 20th century? I would say the

So, which do we wish to have in our Arts and Sciences? The DeLoren or
the Beetle? It sounds like Bors and I would go for the Beetle because
we are interested in how the people of an age lived while others seem 
to want the art, even if it affected only a few. 

Perhaps there should be a seperate contest for practical items vs.
the one for artistic items?

Stefan li Rous
markh at


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