Re: [CR]When is a restoration not a restoration?

(Example: Framebuilders:Richard Moon)

Date: Sat, 02 Jun 2007 18:30:35 -0400
From: "gabriel l romeu" <>
Subject: Re: [CR]When is a restoration not a restoration?
References: <> <>
cc: Classic Rendezvous <>
cc: Classic Rendezvous

> The real issue here, like the concept of "originality" is, like all
> philosophical issues, the creation of men. There is nothing more
> noble about an "original" work than a well restored one, merely
> because the idea is put forth on the "Antique Road Show."

very true, that is a 'argument by authority'. However, 'nobleness' is a hierarchical judgment and is also a creation of men, and may be ascertained by any man.
> "Originality," like all qualities, has its devotees, and they love
> all "original" things, even when that "originality" doesn't reflect
> intrinsic merit, but, merely time co-operating with chance.

It does represent an 'intrinsic merit' to the individuals that love original things making the assertion. merit again is a judgment call. It is all perspective.
> Furthermore, such ideas vary within groups of various collectables,
> collectors and countries. European furniture dealers and collectors
> don't share the views of their American counterparts about
> restoration.

The European antiques market never had quite the cachet of the American,

they have had an established historical tradition while Americans are constantly attempting to establish and verify one. It has been my experience that Europeans are much more open to diversity of styles and more readily consider contemporary furniture, while Americans have far more interest in antiques and copies of antiques. I have found this living in the northern part of Western Europe and family residing there.

Can't be sure of the rest.

Furthermore, when I visited Mr. Alberto Masi lately he
> displayed no shame in a "Feria" bike he had restored. It wasn't
> "original," but, so what, it was beautiful and most any collector
> would have coveted it, save those that demand "originality."
> Personally, unless bikes are in very fine condition, I much prefer a
> restoration-a well done one, of course.

Your use of A. Masi is again an argument of authority. again, does not justify any particular 'truth' to your personal preference. it is all a

matter of preference, isn't it?

what most people 'in the know' prefer about original finishes is how they speak to an objects history of use. This adds many more layers of interest than what the actual object represents. one of the most interesting thing about functional objects (as opposed to something hanging on a wall) is the way they interact with an individual. every mark tells a story (whether assumed accurate or not), and invokes the response of a connection to the past. this is important to many. as one that makes functional objects, this is very important to me as I design around intended use and the object only gains relevance when it is interacting with an individual. Like, it's the people, not the object. I also like traces of the maker in an object.

I used to paint very detailed floorcloths of overhead views on canvas, most if not all of them were hung on the wall. this convinced me to stop .

the pristine object that either was designed to be used and is hanging on a wall not being used may feel rather 'soulless' to many of us. The patina and wear adds many levels to think about when pondering an object. It adds to the aesthetic experience. Some may also think it adds to the beauty.

There are some that think that hanging a bike on the wall to retain it's

pristine nature (never seeing a road again) is an outrage, unfair to the

bike and to someone who will appreciate the many other experiential qualities beyond the visual. I can understand this but am not judgmental enough for condemnation hoping that it is being preserved for

someone in the future that will truly experience it in all it's riding glory.

as a photographer, I was so pleased to have my working double stroke M3 and really despised those hiding their Leicas in the safes and display cases when it was a difficult time (early 70's on) to get a good affordable rangefinder for the street by us doing real work. The CL came out and was fine, but I was lucky enough to find it's heavier and more versatile predecessor. took quite some time and good timing to get

the jump on a collector.

just another opinion.

gabriel l romeu
chesterfield nj usa
± Ø ±