[i] The copy is the original Byung-Chul Han Aeon 2018 (3/8/2018). https://aeon.co/essays/why-in-china-and-japan-a-copy-is-just-as-good-as-an-original? This is an edited extract from ‘Shanzai: Deconstruction in Chinese’ © 2017 by Byung-Chul Chan, translated by Philippa Hurd, and published by MIT Press.
“[participants in an experiment may behave differently…[according to their perception of the authenticity of an artwork] Perceived authenticity influences the evaluation of a painting’s quality as well as the artist’s talent (Wolz and Carbon, 2014).
… “The effect of representations of artworks is rather difficult to examine. One has to differentiate between the already mentioned perceived authenticity (Pelowski et al., 2017) and the actual authenticity. Even if authenticity is correctly perceived – meaning that the participant that is confronted with an image of a real artwork reacts as if he is confronted with the real artwork– a copy does not feature the aura and the temporal and spatial uniqueness of the original (Benjamin, 1969). Therefore, the reaction to the copy might be different (Locher et al., 1999). In summary, researchers should be aware that some investigations are illegitimate when performed on mere copies of actual artworks (for details, see section “Control over Stimuli”). Thus, such experiments should be avoided or they should be conducted with actual artworks.
A rather similar problem arises from the location of the experiment. Researchers should be aware of the difference between a museum setting and a laboratory setting. Usually, visitors are in a certain state of mind when visiting a museum (Brieber et al., 2015) which might be related to the prestige of institutionalism in our time (Pelowski et al., 2017). When participating in an experiment, their state of mind is not necessarily the same. For instance, the contour of the room influences ratings on beauty and pleasantness (Vartanian et al., 2013). Additionally, other aspects of presentation context like framing (Redies and Gross, 2013; Ensor and Hamilton, 2014), boundaries (Cupchik, 2006), lighting (Griswold et al., 2013) and size (Pelowski and Akiba, 2011) have been discussed to be relevant for art appreciation. Quite often studies on artworks target on the state of mind of the perceiver. In these cases, the location of the participant has to be considered in order to reach a valid interpretation of the results (Cela-Conde et al., 2011; Gartus and Leder, 2014).” (From Hayn-Leichsenfring (2017) (saved on-line: https://neilgreenberg.com/ao-reading-empirical-aesthetics-research-by-hayn-leichsenring-2017/ )
Wolz S. H., Carbon C. C. (2014). What’s wrong with an art fake? Cognitive and emotional variables influenced by authenticity status of artworks. Leonardo 47 467–473. 10.1162/Leon_a_00869 [Cross Ref]
[i] (“This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man.”—Advice of Polonius, a counselor to the King, to his son Laertes, in Act 1 Scene 3 of Shakespeare’s play, Hamlet.)