Maintaining Your Artwork

Once you have received your artwork it is important to consider the best ways to maintain the care of it. Preservation is important and framing your artwork will enhance presentation and protect it from damage. We can advise you on making the right choice, but it is also a case for your preferred personal taste. Try to organise framing as soon as you can after receiving your artwork.

Window matting is highly recommended as it creates a gap between the artwork and the glass. It prevents any rubbing between surfaces or moisture that could eventually cause damage. If your artwork is on paper materials it can eventually stick to the glass, so matting is highly suggested. Ensure that any materials that come in to contact with your artwork are acid free to avoid yellowing and fading. Window mattes also assist professional presentation. It’s important to select a suitable colour that compliments the artwork without dominating it. It is best to select more neutral colours that match the artwork or surroundings. Try not to choose strong clashing colours that over power. Take notice of the colours of your walls, rooms and within the artwork itself. This can help you co-ordinate a balanced selection.

Wider mattes encourage stronger focus on the artwork then narrower ones. A narrow border can act as a distraction instead of creating an emphasis on the picture. It is best to have the outside edge correspond with pre -made standard frame sizes to avoid the expense of a custom made frame. Matting is usually less expensive then the actual frame itself.

Try to avoid a cheap frame as it looks cheap. Ready made frames are more cost effective then specially made ones. They are often pre- prepared with glass and fittings. Hanging hooks are already fastened to make hanging easy. If you are uncertain on what matte or frame works best then we recommend you consult a framing professional for the best options. We suggest you stick industrial quality framing tape around the edges of the backing board of a glass frame. This will cover any gaps and prevent dust particles from getting through. Oil paintings do not require a glass frame especially an artwork that has been produced on canvas. However, when you do decide to frame it seek a professional. Oil paintings are best to be framed without glass.

The glass stops a build up of dust from getting to the artwork but a Window cleaner and soft cloth should be used regularly to wipe off any build up of dirt that may have gathered over time. Never use a cleaning agent directly on the surface of a canvas as it may be harmful. It can also leave an unwanted residue on the surface.

Acrylic or Oil paintings that are stretched on to a braced timber stretcher can be custom framed but is not really necessary. The wooden framework acts as a box mount within itself which means you do not need a glass frame or matte. Hanging fixtures can be directly fastened to the wooden frame on the back of the canvas.

Try to avoid using staples to attach hanging wire as the gravitational pull and weight on the artwork can pull. This can stretch the wire and loosen the stapes over time. You are better to secure the wire using small D – hooks on either side of the frame. We recommend thick coated or stainless steel hanging wire because it is stronger and less likely to leave marks on your wall. Use a ruler and a pencil to lightly mark where the hooks need to be positioned. This will ensure they are aligned correctly on both sides. Be careful you don’t position the hooks to low down on the frame otherwise it will lean forward when it is hanging on the wall. Use a small drill bit to gently screw them in securely then wind the hanging wire tightly through the hooks.

Avoid using stick on wall hooks, especially for heavier artwork. The adhesive can deteriorate over time and eventually detach and is not necessarily suitable for all types of wall surfaces.

You are better off using proper nail in wall hooks. Don’t use ordinary nails or thumb tacs. Also consider the type of wall that you have too. Concrete walls are solid and you have many options as to where to set up wall hangers. If you have fibro or plasterboard walls ensure you find the solid wooden beams before installing hooks. You can do this manually by tapping the wall to differentiate between the sound of solid timber beams and just hollow wall. Otherwise you can purchase a beam finder at your local hardware store if you want to be more accurate.

Consider wall positioning to ensure it ties in with the surrounding household decoration and furniture. Relate the artwork to a combination of things such as wall size, symmetry, alignment, mood, household colour schemes and lighting conditions, and then compare it to how it will fit in to the space. Think about how high or low you hang your artwork.

Keep your artwork away of hazards such as liquids and heat. Try to hang it away from moist areas that attract to much dust or mould. Avoid hanging to close to other furnishings. Protect it from the weather by hanging well away from windows and swinging doors. Exposure to direct sunlight is certainly not recommended.

Seek an art conservationist if major damage does occur to your artwork.

Try hanging on to the bubble wrap, packaging and the box we send you with the artwork in case you need to transport it in the future. Store flat but don’t place other items on top of your artwork and keep well away from sharp edges.

Keep original bubble wrap packaging and box in case of future handing or transportation.
Frame and hang your artwork as soon as possible to prevent damage.
Keep well away from weather such as direct sunlight, moisture and dust.
For storage, avoid damp or dusty areas and sharp objects. Keep artwork flat and well insulated in box packaging. Do not place other objects on top of artwork.
If future damage occurs to the artwork or frame don’t attempt to fix it yourself. Seek an art conservationist or framer for repairs.