You’ve found yourself an artwork…now what?

So, you have yourself a piece of artwork and you would like to have it framed. While framing an artwork is pleasing to the eye, it’s also a good way of protecting the work against decay that can be caused by exposure to the elements and by the passing of time.

One of the main concerns in protecting your work is to ensure that your matting and backboards are all acid free, which means that the materials must be buffered to a pH-neutral acidic level. You want any material that comes in contact with artwork to have a neutral pH to help prolong its life. While everything does degrade over time, professional framers do their best to slow that process.

Now that you know the importance of framing, it’s time to find a frame and a framer that you like! When choosing the frame, let the artwork guide you. Many framers will have an opinion — and that opinion is usually quite good — but remember to go with your instincts, as you will be the one who sees that frame on a daily basis. When seeking out framing for your artwork, you want to go a reputable framing shop that deals with higher quality artworks. Read reviews and trust good word of mouth. I have experience working with International Art Designs, as well as Nancy Johns Gallery & Framing, and both are good framers that understand the details of working with valuable artworks.* All in all, it is important to invest in your art collection so it can be protected and enjoyed for years to come!

Written by Stephen Nilsson, Senior Preparator at The Art Gallery of Windsor
Edited by Abbey Lee Hallett, Audience Engagement Coordinator at The Art Gallery of Windsor

*This part of the piece is reflective of the author’s experiences with framers in Windsor-Essex, Ontario, and is not meant as an endorsement of one framer over another. We hope that you gained something helpful from this piece!

The Art Gallery of Windsor (AGW) is a non-profit public art gallery known for its cutting-edge contemporary art program and Canadian art collections.