As framing experts, we are committed to constantly expanding our services offered. One of these services is tapestry framing. Lately at Frames and Stretchers, we've received quite a few textile projects including some aged tapestries that required delicate care. We immediately thought of Stascia, our framer who is also a skilled seamstress. The framing order involving the antique required us to mount and frame the woven art. The challenge was in the fringe. We needed to find a conservation method to keep the fringe from falling victim to gravity and hanging downward. Stascia came up with a tapestry framing technique that involved using a catch stitch. We interviewed her about the piece and her methods. See below for the interview and more pictures.
A close up of Stascia sewing a tapestry order.
Q: What techniques did you use to sew the tapestry?
A: I used a whip stitch for the edges of the rug. For the fringe I used a variation of a catch stitch so that you would not see an obvious straight line of stitches to create the illusion the fringe threads were suspended.
Q: When did you find out that you had a knack for sewing?
A: I have been sewing since I was ten years old. My mother had me do only hand stitching, including needlepoint and cross stitch for about four years before I began using a sewing machine.
Q: Is sewing a hobby or a serious endeavor?
A: It is definitely both to me! I do it for myself because I enjoy the challenge of working with fabric for a wide range of purposes including: custom tailor suits and coats; bridal wear; custom slipcovers; custom window treatments; costume design; quilting and my artwork is canvas sculptures sewn onto a canvas.
Stascia using her sewing skills on another textile framing order.
Q: What are some important things to remember when sewing a more delicate work of art?
A: You have to be familiar with the personality of different fabrics in order to choose the right thread, needle and stitch. You also have to keep in mind the age of the fabric and its fragility when handling and choosing how to display and preserve it.
To see more images of Stascia's detailed work and our day to day framing projects, follow us on Instagram.
Christopher Porche-West's alluring photographs arrived at our workshop a few weeks ago. With the arrival, we were introduced to a side of New Orleanian culture that we had never seen. Porche-West is an accomplished photographer who has been documenting New Orleans and it's residents for the past 30 years. We designed a custom frame for his black and white photo with a black gothic moulding, museum board, and 99% UV museum glass for optimal clarity.
A Porche-West portrait framed with a gothic moulding and museum board.
Porche-West is an accomplished photographer originally from California. He made his first trip to New Orleans in the late 1970s with the goal of researching people of color. The vibrant, diverse culture of the city intrigued him and he began to visit more often to document it through photographs. After traveling between the two places for over a decade, he moved to New Orleans permanently in 1995. Throughout the late 90s Porche-West continued to take photographs and eventually began experimenting with sculpture using scrap metal he found around the city. Some of the most celebrated portraits of his career were of the Mardi Gras Indians which eventually led to the publishing of the book, "Eyes of Eagles New Orleans' Black Mardi Gras Indians."
The famous Mardi Gras Black Indians framed with rustic moulding and museum glass.
Porche-West has also documented other populations of people of color throughout the Caribbean. He has traveled to Haiti several times due to his relationship with the American Haitian Development Association. Additionally, he also traveled to Cuba in 2004 for their carnival and took many portraits there as well. His strength lies in his unique skill of capturing emotion and every day moments in an intimate way. Inspiration and further information can be found on his website and Instagram. To keep up with us and our daily framing projects follow us on Instagram or like our Facebook page. If you need a quote on a framing project you can always visit us in person at the Clemente!
A photo taken by Christopher Porche-West in Haiti.
A Cuban man during carnival.
A Cuban girl dancing during carnival.
A client recently stopped by the workshop with a framing order that included artwork by Jim Dine. The piece itself was a lithograph print with a silver background and eight hearts.
The finished Jim Dine piece.
For the frame design we decided to use hardwood maple, museum glass and spacers to separate the painting from the glass. Finally, we floated the art piece with Japanese paper and rice paste, which has a very low acidity. Since the piece is over 40 years old, we wanted to frame it with the highest level of conservation possible.
A Jim Dine piece entitled, "Frozen Hands, 2013"
Jim Dine is an American artist from Cincinnati, Ohio with an accomplished career in the art world. He first gained recognition for his performance art with the show "Happenings". Dine's next big exhibition was "New Paintings of Common Objects" curated by Walter Hopps. This exhibit was one of the first Pop Art exhibits in America. It included the work of Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein and Robert Dowd. Shortly after the exhibit, he began experimenting with sculpture while attaching items to his artwork. This garnered commercial successes and eventually led to him moving to London to continue working on his art. Pinocchio has also had a prominence in his work leading to a book and a commission for the character's statue in Sweden. Jim Dine's artistic innovation has been widely recognized as groundbreaking in the Pop Art movement and his work is part of museum collections throughout the world.
Linnaeus at Home, 2010 by Jim Dine multicolor.
In conclusion, we had a great time framing this Jim Dine piece and learning more about him. Check out our Instagram to see more of our completed projects or come see us in person on the Lower East Side. To learn more about Jim Dine, visit his artist profile.
José García Cordero is a Paris-based Dominican artist who creates dark, dream-like paintings that explore themes like greed in society. His pieces exude lushness and explore relevant themes including homesickness and greed. A few months ago he had his first solo show in the United States titled, "Tales of Caribbean Nights" at the Lyle O' Reitzel Gallery. We built custom hardwood stretchers and stretched canvas for the entire show which featured 13 pieces, many of them unpublished.
Perro Rojo, the Cordero canvas we built a custom stretcher for and stretched.
Yvette with "El Orgullo", another Cordero piece we stretched.
Often, Cordero draws inspiration from Dominican folklore for his pieces. In an interview with Artnet News, he calls the folklore "simultaneously miserable and beautiful." Additionally, he cites European and Caribbean cultures as influencers in his work as well as the carnival. Cordero has received many awards for his unique art and has shown his work all over the world. The French Senate granted him a Merit Award for his contribution to Latin American culture and he also received a "Gold Medal" in the two editions of the Caribbean Biennale Museum of Modern Art Santo Domingo. His work has been in museums including the Smithsonian and Perez Art Museum Miami (PAMM), as well as being shown in multiple international art fairs Context Miami, Art Basel, ArteBa and Scope.
"Tales of Caribbean Nights" in its entirety.
José García Cordero is a thoughtful artist who draws upon his experiences in Paris and the Dominican Republic to create surreal masterpieces. To learn more about him and see more of his work, check out his profile page on Lyle O'Reitzel Gallery website. For a more in-depth look into his career, check out his Wall Street International interview where he talks about his first return to the Dominican Republic in 40 years.
Miguel and Jose Garia Cordero holding up a painting.
About two weeks ago, architecture studio Leroy Street Studio (LSS) dropped by Frames and Stretchers with a unique project. They brought in wood treated using Japanese preservation technique Shou Sugi Ban and wanted to know if we could make a frame from it. To be frank, we had never built a frame with these materials before, but decided to take the challenge and it turned out great!
The wood that was treated with Shou Sugi Ban by Leroy Street Studio.
Shou Sugi Ban is an environmentally friendly, ancient Japanese wood preservation technique. It is a multi-step, time consuming process. However, it protects the wood against rot, insects, fire, and can last up to 80 years. The first step is to char the top 1/8" of the boards, then wash them off with water, let them dry, brush off the charcoal dust then leave natural or oil with a sealant. Traditionally Shou Sugi Ban was performed on Japanese cedar wood, but now architects and designers use several different types.
Erick and Antonio work with one of the wood pieces treated with Shou Sugi Ban.
LSS is an award winning architecture studio located on the Lower East Side. They have worked on several stunning residential and public projects, so when they wanted to frame a few sketches for a client with Shou Sugi Ban treated wood we were happy to work with them. LSS does more than just architecture, they also have an in-house construction management and interior design division as well. Besides those divisions, they also started Hester Street Collective; an organization that "engages NYC residents in a transparent, participatory process that ensures the design of neighborhood public spaces reflects local wishes and needs." Ultimately, LSS is pretty awesome all around and we're glad to be their neighbors.
Hill House, one of LSS's completed projects.
First we measured and cut the wood into the proper length. We ran into a small challenge here; we had to figure out how to cut a notch for the glass to rest in. When you build a frame completely from scratch, it does not come with a space for the glass cut. Through a series of tests, we decided to go with the table router machine to create the rabbet for the glass. Next we floated the artwork using Japanese paper and wheat paste then proceeded to joining. After joining the pieces, we completed the frame with museum glass and the best hanging system on the market: the Beehive Picture Hangers.
Floating the artwork with Japanese paper and wheat paste.
Antonio with the completed frame.
In conclusion, Leroy Street Studio was blown away with the result, and we always love a challenge. For more on our day to day happenings, make sure to follow us on Instagram and if you need a project framed stop by our workshop for a quote.
Scherezade Garcia is a New Yorker born in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic. When her work came into our workshop it fascinated us with the themes and versatility. As a multidisciplinary visual artist of her artwork often centers around the history and results of colonialism. Currently, she is represented by Lyle O. Reitzel Gallery.
Yvette floating a Scherezade Garcia piece using Japanese paper and wheat paste.
After admiring her work, the next step was floating it. We floated Scherezade's work using Japanese paper and wheat paste and chose hardwood moldings to frame the art.
The large canvas we framed using our reclaimed wood floater frame.
For the canvas above, we used a special framing technique. Using a black floater frame we floated her canvas then stacked a reclaimed wood frame on top of the floater. This adds an element of dimension and space for the viewer.
Scherezade's work is distinctive because of the collage of different materials she uses as well the use of gold pigmentation that resembles fire. She uses symbols like Mickey Mouse intertwined with tropical weather themes and cloudy pigments. To learn more about Scherezade and her multifaceted artwork, you can check out her website.
A piece by Scherezade Garcia featuring tropical and western themes.
Ignacio Iturria is a Uruguayan artist who was born in Montevideo in 1949. His work often features nautical scenes and muddy tones similar to the La Plata River that runs along the coast of Montevideo. We have custom framed and stretched several of Ignacio Iturria's works including the one below. After building a custom heavy duty stretcher, we carefully stretched the canvas and secured it.
Ignacio Iturria uses a distinctly recognizable color palette that mimics and mirrors the colors seen often in Montevideo. Everyday household scenes and mementos are a mainstay as well as family portraits in somber tones. Iturria is one of the most prominent contemporary Uruguayan artists. He took home a special prize in the 1995 Venice Bienal for Uruguay and has remained at the forefront of important art conversations since. His use of accessible subjects and familiar topics make his art a favorite among a wide variety of viewers. He is represented by the Lyle O. Reitzel Gallery which has locations in the Dominican Republic and on New York's Lower East Side.
For more information about Ignacio Iturria and to view his extensive portfolio, please visit his website.