Whether it be the complex carved patterns of the framing style pioneered by the architect Stanford White to the delicate florals of Charles Prendergast, we are so excited about the renewed interest in American framing. Read on for some of our favorite soundbites, tips, and takeaways from our most recent visit to the Met with frame historian Suzanne Smeaton.
When you're choosing a style of frame for the sort of paintings we looked at, a sense of history is everything — weight, scale and correct finish of the period is the beginning of any conversation.
Stanford White — even if you don't have a painting that requires a Stanford White frame, they are fabulous and important frames for custom mirrors.
The discussion of underclay is not just a topic for historical framing! While historically this was significant to the region (red clays tended to come out of Italy for instance) the clay finish is equally as important as it relates to contemporary framing. Even with a modern float frame or a more contemporary style, it's important to consider the colors of underclay and whether it should be black, blue or red.
The Foster brothers, pioneers in the craftsmanship of American frames, were famous for triple gilding finishes — and as Suzanne described them "lush, buttery, and silky".