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To Frame or not to Frame?

“Art consists of limitation. The most beautiful part of every picture is the frame.” — G.K. Chesterton. If that were true, what is driving the popularity of unframed mounting and canvas wraps?

Conventionally, framing protects and enhances artwork. Proper framing of your artwork will ensure it has a long life free from damage that can be caused by touch, light, insects, moisture and movement. For an artist, a framed piece of artwork also increases its perceived value. Many galleries still request submissions for exhibitions to be framed. A frame separates the art from its surrounding space. Frank Zappa once said, “without this humble appliance, you can’t know where the art stops and the real world begins.”

Practicalities aside, framing is a thoughtful and intricate process that many consider an art form in itself. From the finish of the frame to the width of the mat and the type of glass selected, framing artwork is more than just an afterthought. For works on paper, the frame is the platform and the matting draws focus and creates an inner space. While it is often considered a sophisticated extra touch, the mat helps to protect the artwork by creating space for air to circulate.

Many contemporary works of art exist without a frame and instead are mounted, left with a clean edge and seeming to “float” off the wall. Works on stretched canvas are also often left unframed. Depending on the environment and the art piece, the unframed work can create an interesting interaction with the space around it. As much as framing is an art form, the conscious decision to leave artwork unframed can make an equally bold statement.

In home decor, we are seeing a diverse range of trends. A wall may be adorned with a series of neatly aligned framed artworks, and its adjoining wall would be a wildly eclectic, but meticulously arranged, collage of framed and unframed work. While some may opt not to put a painting or print in a frame, there is a trend of framing items that you don’t normally expect to see in a frame. This can be a page torn out of a favourite novel, an heirloom necklace, or a bottle cap of a soda bought from abroad. The possibilities to personalize a living space are endless.

Each piece of artwork is unique, therefore its presentation must be tailored to best complement the work and the space it resides. The proper pairing of frame and artwork can garner magnificent results!

At Opus, we design and manufacture many of our own frames to suit needs of artists and people who want to frame artwork. We are always looking to enhance our selection of ready-made frames and custom-chop services to help you preserve, protect and present your artwork.

Provide your feedback on how we can improve our frame selection and DIY, framing services by emailing sales@opusartsupplies.com by September 30, 2012 and you will be entered into a draw to win a $50 gift card.


Framing protects the artwork from damage. Its like framing and artwork complement each other. You get such beautiful and delicate frames that enhance the beauty of the artwork.

If I were you I would buy the canvas prints of both type. Beauty of Framing only depends on the color of artifacts that we use and the type of the background. Like framing would look good only with light or koderate backgrounds not with dark backgrounds.

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