Monday, July 28, 2008

Reconstructing the past

I am fortunate enough to illustrate Prehistory from time to time, which is quite a heavy responsability because people always beleive in what they have seen. That is why it is so important not to reproduce the established views that might have become “truths” by being mentioned and depicted over and over again. So how should we reconstruct the past? In my opinion:

- Define your task and target group.
- Define the fields necessary, like Archaeology, Geology, and Osteology.
- Find the real experts and ignore the crowds of forged ones.
- Read only relevant articles by those authors.
- Ask them questions if their texts do not give you all the answers.
- Do not listen if they answer different questions than the ones you asked them.
- Make a synthesis of the facts you extracted.
- Present it in a way that your target group can apprehend easily.
- Find someone who is willing to pay you for all this!

Well, above is one attempt: Harp seal hunters in the Baltic Sea 2000 BC. Like all reconstructions it is merely a suggestion. I am open for your thoughts about it.

3 comments:

ArchAsa said...

Love it. Not over-romanticized and the clear seal-skin coats are beautiful. There is movement also in the picture, which is something far too rare within archaeolgical recostructions where people often look like they are consciously posing.

ArchAsa said...

P.S.
Is it perhaps Stora Karlsö off the coast of Gotland that I spy in the background...
:-)

Måns Sjöberg said...

Yes, you are right, Åsa. The two men are residents of Ajvide, Gotland. I am glad you like the picture.