Hand Carved and Gilded Custom Oval Frames Make Charming Cuban Folk Art Shine!

Posted on December 13, 2017 by Alison Pierz

At Frames and Stretchers, we always welcome the opportunity to design unique handcrafted frames to present our client's unique art! These three examples of Cuban Art were no exception. The artworks with a folk art feel were brought to us by a collector who wanted the perfect oval frames for this wedding inspired series. Each canvas also had its own custom shaped stretcher and we'd like to share with you some of the steps in this custom handcrafting process. 

handcrafted custom framing hand carving hand gilding gold leaf oval frames Cuban art folk art painting framing in NYCThe three paintings installed in the collector's home (left) after leaving our studio (right)

The flat oval canvases served as the templates for the stretchers. Then after each was stretched, the paintings served as the templates for the floater style frames. Floater frames are often used with paintings on canvas to create a decorative border without covering any of the image. Several boards had to be glued together and cured before the oval shapes were cut. After being cut and carved for shape, each was painted with 3 coats of gesso, a substance used as a base to begin the gilding process. After the gesso, 3 coats of red clay base were applied. Only then was it time to apply the 22K gold leaf. The gilded surface was then gently rubbed to reveal a subtle bit of the red beneath.

Hand carving hand crafting hand carved frames custom framing oval frames
Boards being glued together and cut into the oval frame molding

Once the gilding process was complete, the gold was sealed and the rest of the frame was painted black. The stretched canvases were then secured into the floater frames giving the trio of paintings a stylish finished look. The art was then delivered and installed at the collector's home by the Art Delivery Van team. Everyone was thrilled with the results! 

Hand crafted custom framing in NYC hand gilding 22K gold leaf hand painted frame floater frame
Details showing the red clay and gold leaf process and the finished result

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Posted in Custom Framing, Floater frames, frames and stretchers, hand carving