Conservation framing at SE1 Picture Frames London


Se1 Picture Frames use conservation framing methods. This means using materials and techniques that preserve and protect an artwork.


Many picture framers do not emply such materials and methods as a priority and as a consequence the artwork can deteriorate in the frame.


Large 1924 poster for the Ballets Russes framed to museum standards with laminated Artglass

Large 1924 poster for the Ballets Russes framed to museum standards with laminated Artglass

Paper is sensitive to its surroundings: it can be affected by damp, changes in temperature and humidity, restriction of movement and exposure to light. Paper will also react to the materials with which it is in contact such as acidic support boards and self adhesive tapes. Over the years we have seen many damaged artworks that are a result of bad framing including mount burns, foxing (small brown spots), fading of pigments or darkening and increasing brittleness of the paper.  As a conservation framer, Se1 Picture Frames prevents this damage happening by using the very best,  modern, conservation  materials and techniques. Conservation materials include: acid free barrier board and acid free mounts, paper wrapped acid free spacers, acid free and moisture resistant backing boards, reversible tapes and pastes and where necessary advising on the use of  Ultra Violet light  filtering glass and acrylic.



At SE1 Picture Frames London we follow conservation guidelines. Looking after and caring for your artwork long term is at the forefront  of what we do. The following rules apply when we frame an artwork:


1. SE1 Picture Frames London will never permanently mount any artwork. We do, however, advise clients to dry mount  photographs to avoid them rippling and cockling over time.  Occasionally some other forms of artwork may be considered for the dry mounting process.  If you do choose to drymount, you should regard the artwork and the substrate as one piece permanently as this is not a reversible and therefor not a conservation method.


2. SE1 Picture Frames London only uses conservation, ph neutral tapes.


3. SE1 Picture Frames London always aims to fix/secure the artwork in as few places as possible while ensuring the artwork is safe and secure. The natural expansion and contraction of paper from humidity and temperature is restricted with more fixings and therefor increases the risk of the artwork rippling.


4. SE1 Picture Frames London never uses chipboard, or cardboard as backing or storage for artwork or any ground-wood pulp-board or paper as backing board or storage for the artwork. Theses boards are highly acidic and damage the artwork. We generally use conservation quality Art-bak which is a corrugated board that helps keep the artwork flat and protect it from moisture.


5. SE1 Picture Frames London never uses conventional wood pulp boards for mounting or backing of artwork. Instead, we use museum or conservation boards


6. SE1 Picture Frames London never uses 2mm glass larger than 36″ x 48″. We would always suggest the use of acrylic as it is stronger and will not break. We also have a variety of 3mm and 4mm glass available.


7. SE1 Picture Frames London will only use glass or antistatic acrylic for artwork done in charcoal or pastels. This is because the static from acrylic can damage charcoal and pastel artwork.


8. SE1 Picture Frames London will never put artwork in contact with the glass. Glass can collect moisture on its surface, and when in contact with the surface of artwork it provides an ideal environment for the growth of mould. Photographs and acrylic paints will also adhere to the glass over time causing damage when removing.



9. SE1 Picture Frames London never allows the artwork to touch the wooden picture frame. Wood is naturally acidic and it contains lignin which breaks down and becomes acidic and will damage the artwork. We use acid free paper wrapped spacers to keep the artwork off the frame.


10. SE1 Picture Frames London will never alter an original artwork without consent form the owner.


11. SE1 Picture Frames quotes to conservation standards unless specified. All quotes for UV Anti-reflective glass are for either Tru Vue UltraVue UV92 (UV filter 92%) or Artglass UV92 (UV filter 92%). Please specify if you require a higher level of UV filter or a “museum” glazing product.

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