Thursday, November 03, 2016

The Artifact Peregrination Scale

ROGUE CLASSICISM: Artifact Peregrination Score: Thinking Out Loud About Provenance, Collection History, etc.. David Meadows proposes a new methodology for preliminary evaluations of of unprovenanced putatively ancient artifacts. Excerpt:
Indeed, it struck me that all our scholarly concern about not commenting on potentially-looted artifacts has done nothing but drive collectors into anonymous land. These are wealthy people whose egos and reputations are a large part of their identity, and while they might not like that we cast doubt on their collecting habits, they’re still going to do it. They just don’t tell us they’re doing it.

With the foregoing in mind, I thought there must be some way to bridge this gap between scholars and collectors to lend confidence to the authenticity of objects and encourage practices which actually add value both from a scholarly point of view and a collector’s point of view. And so, as traffic came to a complete halt on the Burlington Skyway, I came up with what I call the ‘Artifact Peregrination Scale’.

The idea of the scale is to give an artifact a ‘confidence rating’, which scholars can make use of (and contribute to) and collectors can also use for investment purposes (which should have some appeal). It’s basically a 10-point scale, from which points are deducted for various things as follows ...
Read it all and see what you think.