Friday, August 19, 2011

Philosofossilising- Scientific Accuracy in Art

Dinosaur Revolution artist Pete Von Sholly has had enough of the uninformed preemptive criticism that the show has been taking a month before the full program airs. You can read his "rants" (more like very restrained polite counters to the nay saying) here, here, and here.

By Pete Von Sholly

This is just the latest criticism against artists by scientific "purists" I have noticed going on around the web lately. While the majority have been against "amateur" artists, seeing it now extending to professionals I think this is a very interesting and important topic we examine on this site.

What do you think? Is palaeontology, and by association those who follow the technical side of the science, becoming too judgemental towards the artistic efforts of palaeo-artists?

While it can be agreed that many artistic reconstructions often include many inaccuracies (some well known, others contained only in technical articles), how certain are we that our current understanding is absolute? Is the line between accuracy and inaccuracy as black and white as it is conveyed by advocates of the technical literature. Or is accuracy merely a probability drawn from our current understanding, and that this probability could easily dwindle with future research and discovery (just as our old understandings of the past 150 years have?). So how accurate is palaeontologic accuracy (or for that matter palaeontologic inaccuracy)?

So expect some posts, and hopefully a series of ARTicles about this issue. We would very much like to read your thoughts on this topic. If you would like to write an essay to be seen on ART Evolved, but aren't a member of this site let us know at, and we'll make it happen!

Above all definitely let us know your thoughts in the comment sections of this post, and future ARTicles on this issue.