To Frame? Or Not To Frame?

February 12 / 2021 by Kennedy Contemporary

A common question we receive from clients is "Should I get this framed?" or "Does this need to be framed?"

If the artwork is on paper or not able to be displayed "as is," then it definitely requires a frame or some way of hanging, displaying, and preserving the work of art for years to come. 

However, if the work is on canvas or wood panel, then the question of framing becomes more of an aesthetic decision. The main factor to consider is how the sides are painted. 

Depending on the artist, they may leave the sides unpainted, wrap the composition around the sides of the canvas, or paint a neutral (usually black or white) color.

1) If the composition extends around the sides of the piece (like "Blue Traces" by Joseph Justus), then we typically recommend not adding a frame and allowing the work to speak for itself.

2) If the sides have a neutral color (like "EQ" by Leslie Allen), then the decision can go either way. The work can stand by itself with the sides painted black, or you can add a frame to compliment your decor.

3) If the work has unpainted or white painted sides (like "Shine" by Nicole Egert), then we typically recommend adding a frame to make the piece feel finished. Depending on your decor, a natural wood or silver floating frame would look fantastic for this piece.

Considering a piece and want to know if you should add a frame? Text or email us and we would be happy to offer our suggestions. We also work with a variety of local framers and would be happy to make recommendations.