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ADVICE FOR BEGINNERS AND COLLECTORS OF ANTIQUES AND RELICS

@@The various books on antiques and relics currently available are only suitable for beginners as tools; as for experienced collectors, those books are for limited reference only. It would be impossible for one to follow the characteristics described in the books, in order to find an identical antique or relic as it appeared, because what was described in the books referred to only one particular item. We must understand, during the process of every artwork, the original colors and glazes produced will vary from the temperature at that moment, they could never be manipulated at that era. The diversification of hand-made contouring decorations, painting styles, and models all depends on each artist's intelligence and wisdom, which made each article unique; Just like different painting artists, how can they create two identical pieces of work? Same thing in the world of antiques and relics, only if the temperature for original color and glaze color were controlled by the modern computers; or the contouring decorations and painting styles were color-printed by machine, how could any piece of work possibly be the same? The conditions and elements during the formation of antiques and relics were not manipulable at those times, making each piece of artwork unique.

@@In addition, the study of antiques and relics is intricate and complex, it required interactive substantiation between theory and the real object to be utterly comprehensive and intuitive. The so-call "experts" are mostly those who have read many books on antiques and relics, they are able to offer abstract theories when speaking of antiques and relics, but the critics tend to be rash, biased or even malign. The ambiguous benchmark was therefore produced. The lack of objective, rational, or fair appreciation system in the antiquity industry encouraged the criticisms of blind antique experts. The destruction to the historic relics is deep and huge. If the tide went on without a turning force, the antique and relic market in Taiwan would be faded. It is of great detriment to the historic relics of past dynasties. The real antiquarians who can apply theory into practice with sufficient knowledge to tell the authenticity of antiques are only few in the industry.

@@ Lastly, I sincerely suggest my fellow antique collectors, it is of great timing for you to replenish your collection in Taiwan. If you research thoroughly, there are indeed plenty of precious historic relics on the market. Perhaps you would step back, because according to the "expert": if you found something that is not in the books, it might be fake, it might be a counterfeit from China. Allow me to rebuke, there are thousands of strange things in the world, there is nothing "absolute" or "impossible," especially when it comes to antiques and relics! A right choice depends on your fortitude and luck. It is always wise to you ask yourself first before seeking for others. Certainly the above is only my shallow opinion, you might put it aside after reviewing, I leave it to you for the judgement. As for me, at least I have been making my best effort to preserve Chinese antiques and relics, it should count as a token of my contribution.

Antique and Relic Researcher
Sincerely,Tsai Wen Shiung,
Taichung
July, 1998

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