Picture Frame Moulding

Picture Frame Moulding
Construction

The frame along with its mounts protects and complements the artwork. Art work framed well will stay in good condition for a longer period of time. Joan Miró once did a work specifically to frame with a flea market frame, and many painters and photographers who work with canvas "gallery-wrap" their artwork, a practice wherein the image extends around the edges of the stretched canvas and therefore precludes use of a decorative picture frame. As picture frames can be expensive when purchased new, some people remove pictures from a frame and use the frame for other pictures.
 

Picture Frames have traditionally been made of wood, which is still the most common material, although other materials are used including silver, bronze, aluminum, and plastics such as polystyrene. A picture frame may be of any color or texture, but gilding is common, especially on older wooden frames. Some picture frames have elaborate mouldings which may relate to the subject matter. Complicated older frames are often made of moulded and gilded plaster over a plain wood base. Picture frames come in a variety of profiles, but generally the lengths of moulding feature a "lip" and rabbet, the function of which is to allow a space to hold in the materials in the frame. The lip extends usually about a quarter of an inch past the edge of the rabbet.

The picture frame may contain a pane of picture framing glass or an acrylic glass substitute such as acrylite or plexiglas to protect the picture. In some instances where the art in the frame is dispensable or durable, no protection may be necessary. Glass is common over watercolors and other artwork on paper, but rare over oil paintings, except very valuable ones in some museums. Picture framing glass may be treated with anti-reflective coatings to make the glass virtually invisible under certain lighting conditions. When a picture frame is expected to be exposed to direct sunlight, or harsh lighting conditions such as fluorescent lights, UV filtering may be added to slow down the photocatalytic degradation of organic materials behind picture framing glass.

Shapes

Picture frames are generally square or rectangular, though circular and oval frames are not uncommon. Frames in more unusual shapes (often appropriately coloured) are usually frames intended for photographs, such as heart-shaped frames to go around wedding pictures and the like, and there have been shaped shadowboxes made, though these have generally been used to roughly follow the outlines of sports jerseys and other memorabilia rather than pictures. There are also picture frames designed to go around corners. Another popular design for a picture frame is the scoop, an indent in the frame that adds depth.

origin

One of the earliest frame examples was a discovery made in an Egyptian tomb dating back to 2nd century A.D. in which a fayum mummy portrait was discovered at Hawara still within its wooden frame. This finding suggests the mummy portraits may have been hung in the owners' homes prior to inclusion within the funerary equipment.The portrait and its frame were most likely preserved by the desert climate, according to frame historian and installation expert Marilyn Murdoch explained in a historical talk to museum docents.

Although framing borders in ancient art were used to divide scenes and ornamentation by ancient Egyptian and Greek artists in pottery and wallpaintings, the first carved wooden frames as we know them today appeared on small panel paintings in twelfth and thirteenth century Europe. According to a historical series published in Picture Frame Magazine, these early "framed panel paintings were made from one piece. The area to be painted was carved out, leaving a raised framing border around the outside edge, like a tray. The whole piece was then gessoed and gilded. Painting the image on the flat panel was the last thing to be done."

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