When we think of preserving or beautifying photographs and artwork, we think of framing them. We frame things we take pride in, that we cherish, like our best pictures, prints, and pieces of art. This logical impulse to frame meaningful objects has a long history.
Picture frames have existed for over 2,000 years, starting with the ancient Egyptian tradition of Fayum mummy portraits, which are considered one of the oldest examples of modernist paintings and the first forms of framed portraits. The earliest known frame was the portrait of the deceased painted on the sarcophagus, surrounded by a decorative wooden frame. It was thought to be a window through which the deceased could be seen.
For the longest time, the design of frames didn’t really change much until the 12th and 13th century in Europe. Previous to these newer frames, the production process was costly and time-consuming. Artists began searching for cheaper and faster alternatives, which resulted in the birth of the modern frame. These 13th century frames made frames more widely available and created the precedent of framing artwork, but were still considered a luxury.
By the time of the 15th century, framed artwork was commissioned by the Church, and were incorporated into the architecture of the churches themselves. Eventually, wealthy estate owners began to commission portraits with frames for their private residences, and this brought on the advent of the portable picture frame, combining artistry and functionality. Amazingly enough, this evolution of framing occurred long before the invention of photography, which wasn’t popularized until the 1800s.
In recent years, framing has extended to more personal ventures, including personal artwork, photographs, and memorabilia. To frame something in today’s day and age show that a person takes pride in the creation or ownership of the object in the frame, and that it has personal relevance.
Frames now come in a variety of modern and traditional designs, and can be used for any kind of setting, whether it’s for homes, restaurants, practices, and more. Digital frames are also becoming popular, in lieu of recent technological advancements, but nonetheless, expert framing is something that hasn’t gone out of style in 2,000 years!
Every print, picture, or work of art you frame pays homage to the rich past of this historically ceremonious process. Framing an object really shows your respect for it, and lends your photographs or art collection a sense of importance.
What are you waiting for? Bring in all of your artwork, prints, and memorabilia that you hold dear. Our expert framers are dedicated to delivering you quality custom framing products and services that you’re happy to display, helping your valuables stand the test of time and stay well-preserved over the years.