There is no truth. There is only perception
Gustave Flaubert

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Throughout the history of painting artists like Tiepolo used titles such as Time Unveiling Truth for their allegorical paintings. In Time in Contest with Truth there is a reference to this history of allegory in painting. The action of two men engaged in a table tennis contest represents a battle often waged in art, politics and life for the right to represent what might pass for truth. It is often the case that, whoever wins the battle, will write the subsequent history book or become the next leader. The two paintings in this triptych were once the subject of such a battle and although we are certain which one is real and which one counterfeit, there is not always a clear-cut answer at the end of each contest.

On April 1, 2011 the performance Time in Contest with Truth took place in the galleries of the museum.

The performance envisioned by Ted Efremoff - TIME IN CONTEST WITH TRUTH seeks to activate New Britain Museum's various galleries as historic zones, each with a unique perception of what truth is. Participating artists are Gregory Bailey, James Holland, Chris Joy, John O'Donell, Rebecca Parker. Each performer (wearing a red tie or rose) will lecture on artworks in the museum representing the prevailing thought of the time period in American art when the artworks were created. The performers are interested in engaging the audience in a dialogue about the nature of truth in relation to time as part of an interrogation of the museum as a vessel for public opinion. The performance will happen on Friday, April 1st from 6 to 8pm at the New Britain Museum of American Art.

We often find belief, truth and power closely associated, with one mistaken for another. The representation of belief as truth in the service of power occurs so often in human experience that we might use the term "truth claims" as more appropriate…… An objective fact can prove to be, in actuality, a subjective insistence designed to achieve a certain end……. …….Belief may have the aura of truth when it has been invested with power, but beliefs may be only strong proposals……..

Critical Art Pedagogy: foundations for postmodern art education

-Richard Cary

Link to article on the museums site: