kyarazen wrote:the homologue of yixing collection in thailand is the collecting of buddhist paraphernalia, or like i would say disdainfully.. little clay tablets of images etc. i've ceased collecting thai buddhist paraphernalia for a very long time already although the itch comes back sometimes..
if you head to thaprachan, it can be possible to buy somdej wat rakangs by somdej toh by the kilograms! comes in a bucket soaked in a certain mixture to give the aged patina. you can buy phra-ayuthaya style buddhas in all sorts of sizes, some even with nicely made patinas. for thai amulets it has already reached the point where the fake and the real cannot be easily distinguished. there's now laser scanning and mold creation technologies, all the markings that the magazines and books talk about are now faithfully introduced in all the replica amulets. every year there are also countless competitions across thailand where phraks are verified, and given a certificate if they win etc. soon after it was possible to purchase professionally made certificates with the right "signatures" and water marks.
i'm just drawing a parallel to yixing wares. if the thais can do excellent forges of clay tablets, the chinese can be very advanced with their antiques. whether the point of forging antique yixing or antique porcelain has reached the point where the real/fake cannot be easily distinguished... its perhaps time for the hobbyists to train themselves, and to realize in time to comeTead Off wrote:Gemstones are already being faked, and faked extremely well. They can fool all but the very trained eye.
So far, I'm not sure if I have come across any 'fake' antique Yixing. I think it would be extremely difficult to fake the 'look' of Qing or Ming teapots. You can copy the style, the shape, etc., but the look of the actual clay, patina, etc., is very hard to do. Not saying it is impossible as that would be naive statement. The Chinese are masters at copying and with the addition of technology, the sky is the limit.
For me, there comes a point when the above converges in a way where it is very difficult to separate the old from not old and common to be fooled. That is the time to walk away. I will not buy many things that I used to buy years ago in my field of antiquities.
Many people with scientific backgrounds that understand material composition and analysis often think that duplication of old things is just a matter of getting the 'formula' right. In almost all cases of deception, something gives it away as being reproduced. Perfection of duplicity is extremely difficult. It is probably a very small percentage that can withstand sustained scrutiny. The really scary stuff is the porcelain replication of period blue and whites which bring big bucks. But even in this field, the sleuths have caught up with the forgers. It is a cat and mouse game. One side leads the other. And, no one is spared from making a mistake.