Antiques are a national treasure which needs to be protected and managed tightly. Antique trade without permission is not only illegal but also a threat to national culture. To prevent illegal antique trade Việt Nam should promote international co-operation and have sanction to treat illegal antique trade activities.
Culture researcher Trung Nguyên spoke about antique management.
Could you explain why antique are valued so much?
It is interesting question. It seems to be easy to answer the question. But the answer can not satisfy all people because there are different points of view about antiques. However, there are two kinds of antiques. One is that which has special spirit values to its owner. And the second is the antique that is hundreds or thousands years old. The rarer the piece more valuable it is.
It is also difficult to talk about price of the antique. Is the antique priceless or it has specific price. We never find out the final answer. I take an example. Prices of an antique increases from a few hundreds million đồng to billions of đồng after several trades. Or an antique is sold to a person paying the highest price at an auction. Is this final price. Absolutely it is not.
The antique price is for trade. It is not comprehensive value of the antique. Value of the antique doesn’t depend on cheap and expensive price. The antique has specific price in the market. But its comprehensive value is priceless.
You said the antique can be purchased in the market. But is it knowledgeable to recorgnise the value of the antiques?
Absolutely, yes. Value of the antique doesn’t reflect history and culture only but it is significant at present and the future. Each antique has its own soul and each antique contains a part of national culture. It also includes a part of human culture development process.
It is not over to say the antique is culture of all periods. Value of the antiques increases with time.
They can be divided into two groups. The first is to set the antique collection not to classify shape and size of the antique and not to base any regulations. The antique in the second group will be classified. The second group is much more difficult because it needs to research and study carefully to assess the antique value.
How does someone become a professional antique collector?
You can not be a professional antique collector accidentally. A professional antique collector has to spend time, health, money and also needs good luck. There is a big gap between the antique lover and the antique collector. The antique collector will be interested many things around the antique such as the antique situation and the origin.
Illegal antique trade is a global problem. What should Việt Nam do to control this?
Việt Nam needs to promote co-operation with other countries based on the international convention. It also needs to have more serious sanctions to treat violation cases.
Furthermore, it is necessary to promote culture exchange between Việt Nam and other countries aiming to introduce officially Vietnamese antique at international exhibition, seminar and fair. — VNS