There is a right time and a wrong time to be a stickler when it comes to grammar. This is the wrong time.
This is not new, not due to recent decline, and not a result of casual typing.
As a gift to my brother in celebration of his graduation from med. school 30 years ago, I bought him a clock, and ordered a small brass plaque from the same jeweler. The plaque was to be applied to the back of the clock. The plaque was to be inscribed with the date, his name, and one other word. You guessed it. Same misspelling. I presented the clock to him sans plaque and re-presented it to him when they were able to redo it.
I'm sure that misspellings go back to the Stone Age. A few years back a city library not far from me was scandalized by misspelled words: Library
Great link. Names are difficult. My guess is that some committee was presented with a conceptual sketch including the misspellings and nobody bothered to review it. They probably approved the design misspellings and all, and they are allowing the artist to take the heat.
If they didn't have a sketch and approval for such a public work, then shame on them.
Either way, I can't see how the artist bears the full brunt of the public outcry.
The artist admitted that the names were spelled correctly on the approved sketch, and that she made the errors while molding the clay. To quote: “I just wasn’t that concerned. None of us are particularly good spellers anymore because of computers. When you are in a studio full of clay, you don’t give it much thought. The people that are into humanities, and are into Blake’s concept of enlightenment, they are not looking at the words. In their mind, the words register correctly.”
I don't think you'd want her to engrave your brother's clock!
To quote: “I just wasn’t that concerned. None of us are particularly good spellers anymore because of computers. When you are in a studio full of clay, you don’t give it much thought. The people that are into humanities, and are into Blake’s concept of enlightenment, they are not looking at the words. In their mind, the words register correctly.”
Her "explanation" also shows she had/has a terrible work ethic.
Under the circumstances, I'm surprised the officials agreed to pay additional money for corrections. Considering the artist appears to have no remorse or shame for her errors, she should have gotten even more names wrong to get a larger correction fee.
I guess it pays to be an artist or a weatherman.
In the words of the essayist Maurice Maeterlinck (Only God knows how Maeterlinck's name might have come out in clay) in the essay "Pro Patria:"
" … they had … nothing to lose -- save honor."
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