march 2013



Detail of work by Alphonse Mucha    

Spring has Arrived!

March Newsletter


Dear FrameStore Client,   

Alphonse Mucha PaintingSpring has finally arrived in Southern California, and warmer days coupled with more sunlight after the end of daylight savings time equates to a lot of time spent outside after a long winter! While experiencing the beauty of nature around Los Angeles, don't forget to also take in some of our beautiful local art scene as well! A walk through the Culver City art district, or a visit to one of the city's many amazing museums can make any weekend an adventure in culture!
All that time outside usually means a lot more family photos and memories, as well as mementos and souvenirs. And who can resist picking up some of the amazing art you will find while doing art walks and slumming the galleries? Make sure that the fine art, photographs, mementos, and most of all, the memories, of this special season spent with those you love are forever protected and preserved. Conservation is our specialty, so stop in to any of our 9 SoCal locations to discuss the options for protecting your newest family heirlooms with one of our expert designers.
We once more bring you some of the latest news from the world-wide art scene, as well as information on new art exhibits and gallery openings around the Southland. And our In The Studio section sees the first installment of a new Education series which will showcase information on various fine art conservation topics. So check out what is new below, and in the months ahead.
Don't forget to check out the newest addition to FrameStore's commitment to our clients over at our blog. Newsletters only happen once a month, but our art blog can keep you up to date on the newest news, information, gallery and museum events as well as help educate and enlighten you on everything about art, design, and framing. So, drop over and see what we have happening at the FrameStore Blog today!
Spring is here, with all the fun that it brings, and FrameStore wants to help you make those memories last!
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FrameStore has been helping southern Californians take care of their photos, artwork, and mementos correctly for over 35 years.

Stop by one of our stores this week to have one of our Art and Design experts help you to turn those precious memories that will only come once into lasting and lovely art that will bring joy for decades.

Visit our website at for locations and contact information!


Art World News:


Stolen Banksy Slave Labour (Bunting Boy) Mural to be Auctioned


Banksy's mural, known as Slave Labour (Bunting Boy),was mysteriously, and secretly, removed last week from the facade of a Wood Green Poundland only to reappear at an online auction site with a $400,000 starting bid.


Read the full article at our blog:


Pop Sensation Ellie Goulding Surprises Fans with "Crash Concert" at LACMA


English singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Ellie Gouldingheld a secret performance at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) on Monday, entertaining the crowd from within artist Chris Burden's "Urban Light" sculpture.


Read the full article at our blog:




SoCal Art Happenings -



 An Autumn Grove by Du Jin c15th-16th century     

Ming Masterpieces from the Shanghai Museum

March 3, 2013 - June 2, 2013


We are all familiar with the revolutionary period Chinese propaganda art, especially the stylized and idyllic posters of the 50s and 60s. But you may not realize just how far back this tradition of art in the name of propaganda goes in China.


Ming Masterpieces from the Shanghai Museum is a collection of 15th and 16th century Taoist art that was created by a state-employed artist corp as a form of visual and cultural propaganda during the Ming Dynasty. The exhibit is a collection of 10 early Ming masterpieces from the Forbidden City, along with a number of related Zhe School works on loan from the permanent collection of the Shanghai Museum.


A type of Chinese painting rarely seen in American collections, this exhibit explorers the relationship between Imperial patronage, religious and culture themes and propaganda within a world of art where court painters held ranks and titles as members of the imperial secret service.


So, be sure to see this fascinating examination of a world of court bureaucrats wielding paintbrushes to bring the beauty of art to the service of imperial court politics during the Ming Dynasty.


And if you visit the exhibition, be sure to leave us your thoughts and impressions on our blog over at


Copro Gallery:


Xue Wang:

Time off for Good Behaviour
February 23, 2013 - March 16, 2013


Superficially, Xue Wang's paintings are filled with the stuff of childhood; dolls, children, frilly Victorian dresses and toys of all sorts. But beneath the immediate is an edgy and sometimes violent desire to unsettle the viewer.


Xue Wang was born in Northern China in 1980, and after a degree in Fashion from the Lu Xun Academy of Fine Art, she moved to London at age 22 to finish her MA. It was during this time that her creative impulses turned from fashion design to painting.


Wang's art is a juxtaposition of interests, that still shows her background and love of fashion, things Victorian, and silver screen era pin up models. All this mixed in with the whimsy of childhood memories and paraphernalia.


But Wang warns against reading too much into her specific pieces:


"Any search for particular meaning in my idiosyncratic work may not yield much. If one word were chosen to describe my paintings, it would be 'edgy'. Superficially they may appear 'cute' but my intention is to unsettle, albeit subtly. As the creeping wasp on the fairy cake does." - Xue Wang


Her exhibit at the Copro Gallery will be ending on Saturday the 16th, so tonight and tomorrow are your last chances to see her enigmatic work. Don't miss out.



 Faith, Hope, Charity by C.R. Stecyk III    

Faith, Hope, Charity:

The Art of C.R. Stecyk III


February 1, 2013 - April 1, 2013


A Southern California native, artist Craig Stecyk was introduced to the Los Angeles neighborhood of Bunker Hill, where MOCA is sited, through the stories of relatives who had witnessed its transformation. In the 1880s, Bunker Hill began as an enclave of power and privilege characterized by the ornate Victorian mansions erected by members of Los Angeles's political and cultural elite. By the mid-20th century it was a working-class enclave, with many of the old mansions repurposed into boarding hotels. Civic leaders referred to the neighborhood as a "Asylum" and a threat to the public good. In 1955 the City of Los Angeles began a massive redevelopment project in Bunker Hill, leveling the area to make way for more modern plazas, high-rises, and office towers, and displacing approximately 20,000 residents in the process. Few of Bunker Hill original street names were retained during redevelopment, though local lore holds that the hill's main thoroughfares were named for the cardinal virtues of faith, hope, and charity. What is now Grand Avenue was formerly Charity Street and, to its west, Hope Street remains, but examinations of historical maps cannot confirm the exact location of Faith Street.


Faith, Hope, Charity by C. R. Stecyk III refers both to the ambiguity of Faith Street in the original Bunker Hill neighborhood, where MOCA Grand Avenue is located, and the allegorical need for it in the remodeled landscape that has been thoroughly leveled and radically rebuilt. Musing on the superimposition of cultures and values on landscape and language, the installation comprises a grouping of panels whose dimensions are that of early 20th century show bills. Featuring various combinations of letterpress printing, serigraphy, photography, airbrushing, printing, and relief painting based on architectural fragments from Bunker Hill, the panels will be altered by the artist throughout the duration of the exhibition in Broad Lobby at MOCA Grand Avenue.


In the Studio -


In the Studio:

American Institute for Conservation Mount Illustration   

Custom-Framing Essentials:  



Conservation Mounting


When considering a mounting choice for your artwork, it is essential to understand the options, techniques, and materials involved and how they will affect the art and its value over time.

The 'mount' is made up of several distinct elements, including the window mount (or mat), the undermount (or back mount), and the hinge (or binge). To provide the correct support and protection from environmental exposures, the window mount and back mount must be between 1 and 2 millimeters (4ply) thick at minimum. The hinge should typically be along the top edge to allow the paper to hang and breathe naturally and should use a conservation quality white paper tape or linen tape. Never use commercial tapes (masking tape, Scotch tape, etc.) or pressure sensitive tape.


The Mount Board


Choosing the correct type of mount and backing board is essential when you are dealing with any work of art that you wish to last for decades or that holds any value, either inherent or sentimental. The mount (and mat or window mount) are the elements of the framing design that are directly in contact with your artwork over the life of the piece, so never, ever skimp on the quality of the mounting for your artwork.


There are three primary grades or levels of mount board to consider:


Museum Grade - The highest quality material available, it is designed for permanent framing of valuable original artwork with an eye to long-term conservation.


Cotton Rag Board

- A sold core 100% cotton fiber board is the highest quality mount material available. Unlike wood pulp papers, cotton rag mat does not require acids to break down the fibers for use, so they are conservation quality and will not harm or burn the artwork they are in contact with. While not required to be buffered, some cotton rag board does use alkali buffering* that can prolong the life and stability of the board and add extra protect for certain types of art.


Conservation Grade - An intermediate level of materials designed for framing works of art, prints and photographs that may have a lesser value and are not intended for long term conservation.


Conservation Board

- This type of mounting and matting board is made from wood pulp papers that have been chemically treated to reduce the acidity levels and then treated with a layer of alkali buffering* between the artwork and the paper. This is an intermediate quality material not intended for very valuable art.


Standard Grade - These mount materials should never be used for any work of art which is expected to last or that has any value. The materials in this grade of mount will damage any art it is in contact with over time.


Standard Mount Board

- This grade of material encompasses a wide range of possible materials and boards that are not acid-free and not of conservation quality that will damage your artwork over time. Un-treated wood pulp papers, cardboard, commercial papers, and other materials of this level should never, ever be used in the framing of fine art. Damage and loss of value will result.


*A Note on the Mounting Photographs- Some types of photographs may be negatively impacted by the alkali buffering used in certain mounting materials. A true, un-buffered 100% cotton rag board is highly recommended for any and all photography to be safe.


The Hinges

  • It is important when hinging fine artwork not to restrict the ability of the paper to breathe. All papers, to some degree expand and contract with changes in humidity and temperature. Mounting artwork in a manner that restricts this movement can result in damage to the paper. The art should be hinged along the top and allowed to hang naturally.
  • Any tapes and adhesives used to hinge or mount fine art should be free of materials and chemicals that will stain or damage the paper, and be fully removable at a later date. Commercial tapes and pressure sensitive tapes (masking tape, Scotch tapes) that are not designed for museum quality conservation will leave sticky residue, staining, and be difficult to remove without severe damage to the paper. Use only conservation grade tapes and adhesives.
  • Water-soluble conservation gummed white paper mounting tape is acceptable but pressure sensitive archival conservation tapes are not recommended for use directly on the picture.

Talk to an art and design expert at any of our nine southern California custom-framing stores for more information on conserving and protecting your fine art, or leave me a comment below and I would be happy to answer any questions you may have.


Visit your nearest FrameStore location.


We here at FrameStore hope that your springtime will be filled with love, art, family, and many memories with lots, and lots of lively colour!


Chuck Mitchell