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The Art of Framing


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De la série Frame Movie n°882, Majid Davoodi

De la série Frame Movie n°882

Majid Davoodi

Print - 35.4 x 55.1 x 1.6 inch


Festividades de la Virgen de Guadalupe / Amate Paper Mexican Folk Art Painting Frame, Alejandro Diaz Nava

Festividades de la Virgen de Guadalupe / Amate Paper Mexican Folk Art Painting Frame

Alejandro Diaz Nava

Painting - 28.3 x 36.6 x 1.6 inch


Trabajando en el Telar / Mexican Folk Art Featherwork Frame, Lilia Alvarez Gonzalez

Trabajando en el Telar / Mexican Folk Art Featherwork Frame

Lilia Alvarez Gonzalez

Sculpture - 21.3 x 16.5 x 1.2 inch


Fin del Viaje / Mexican Folk Art Featherwork Frame, Maribel Maya Aguirre

Fin del Viaje / Mexican Folk Art Featherwork Frame

Maribel Maya Aguirre

Sculpture - 13.8 x 17.7 x 0.8 inch


Relation of wishing and paying, David Renggli

Relation of wishing and paying

David Renggli

Painting - 46.7 x 36.8 x 1.6 inch


Brand of War, Ellis

Brand of War


Sculpture - 24.8 x 20.9 x 3.9 inch


Genesis of a new world, God Sylver

Genesis of a new world

God Sylver

Painting - 15.7 x 15.7 x 1.6 inch


White Diamond, Hunt Slonem

White Diamond

Hunt Slonem

Painting - 10 x 8 x 2 inch

Price upon request

Angel Caido / Ceramics Mexican Folk Art Clay Frame, Maricela Gomez Lopez

Angel Caido / Ceramics Mexican Folk Art Clay Frame

Maricela Gomez Lopez

Sculpture - 35.4 x 19.7 x 9.8 inch


Fragment d'un discours amoureux, Jack Hironimus

Fragment d'un discours amoureux

Jack Hironimus

Fine Art Drawings - 16.1 x 12.6 inch


Preparando las festividades del nacimiento / Amate Paper Mexican Folk Art Painting Frame Nativity, Santiago Alejandro Celis

Preparando las festividades del nacimiento / Amate Paper Mexican Folk Art Painting Frame Nativity

Santiago Alejandro Celis

Painting - 37 x 29.1 x 1.2 inch


The Art of Framing

Although an artwork itself is fascinating, we can't help but feel that something is missing when it isn't framed. In fact, would we even notice the great masterpieces in galleries if they were not highlighted by a grandiose frame?

The art of framing developed simultaneously alongside the history of art, where painting and framing are two complementary practices which together enhance the overall work. How the framing technique evolved: Frames first appeared as early as 2000 BC with prehistoric rock paintings, where men would draw around their works to mark out and emphasise their drawings. In antiquity, Fayum portraits were surrounded by pieces of wood, and this is how the frame we know today was created.

In the twelfth century, painters began using hard frames called “borders" of varying sizes to highlight church altarpieces. These were however a lot more understated in comparison to the extravagant frames used during the Renaissance, which took hours to sculpt and create.

During the modern and contemporary art movements, the use of frames became completely dependent on the preferences of the artist and their desired outcome. Some artists like Pere Borrell del Caso for example, consider the frame as an integral part of the work, which can be seen within his “Trompe-l'œil" ("deceive the eye") works.

Like with any decorative object in history, the form of the frame developed in conjunction with the current trends of the time. Nowadays, many artists favour simple frames in order to focus the viewer's eye towards their work. This applies to English artist Martin Bradley, whose works are bordered by a very fine gold frame. Graffiti artist Keymi's puzzle pieces are also presented in very plain black frames, allowing the viewer to appreciate the work without getting distracted by embellishments. Sometimes painters go as far as to integrate the frame in the work, or create the work from the frame. This is the case with artist Giulio Paolini, and French painter Louis Cane who was part of the Supports/Surfaces art movement. Meanwhile, emerging artist Gaspard Mitz uses deep set frames for his comparably small artworks (20x30cm). The viewer feels like a giant observing his scale models of exhibition rooms in museums, where figurines marvel at masterpieces and interact with each other.

There are no pre-existing rules for the art of framing, differing styles and materials can be used together without issue. It isn't unusual to find artists experiment with frames, because combining extravagant and minimalist styles allows for an original and completely new composition. Whether it's a classical painting presented behind a coloured Plexiglass screen, or an up-to-date abstract print surrounded by a traditional wood-carved gilded frame, the choices are truly endless.

Aesthetic value is undoubtedly important when it comes to framing, however it is important to remember framing's primary purpose; to protect and support the artwork so it remains in the best possible condition.

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