April 14th, 2013

Obama Inauguration Invitation

After President Obama won his first election, the state of Illinois produced some keepsake license plates, which our client purchased. The results of our framing them appear on our home page and in the Idea Wall (where we carved the slogan into the mat "Yes We Can"). The second time around, our client received an invitation to the inauguration, which she brought over to us to have framed. What you see below is the result:

                                 Obama Inaugural Invite Shadowbox

IC Collage Detail #1IC Detail #4IC Detail #4









 IC Detail #5IC Detail #2






     IC Detail #6



The overall size of the shadowbox was 31 3/4 x 14". The frame is a Gemini G-769 distressed gold with beaded edge. Glass is True-Vu Conservation Clear (filters 99% of UV rays). The main shadowbox was made from Bainbridge 4410 Golden Samurai silk mat board. The gold liner mat around the document openings is Crescent 9856 Sun metallic gold. The tassle was sewn down and the engraved brass plate was done  for us by Scott Kurtz of SHER, Inc. engravers.

Framing designed and executed by Julie Kotulak.

Photos by Brian Flax, shown by kind permission of Geraldine Johnson.

Quilted Textile From India Shadowbox

We frame a fair number of textiles, with every one of them being quite different. A lot of hand sewing is involved, where we try to match thread colors to the textiles' colors so that our stitching is not terribly visible. Sometimes the textiles are very old or need a lot of TLC. Our framer, Julie Kotulak, handled this textile from India really nicely and shadowbox framed it in a simple, tasteful frame for her client:

  Indian Textile Shadowbox FrameUpper left texile and frame detail











  LL Texile Detail







Textile Detail 3



  The shadowbox's glass size is 23 x 60. The frame is an Engelsen 26876 1 1/4" tall matte black frame with a scooped inner edge. WaterWhite UV Anti-reflective glass was used to protect the textile from harmful UV light and to allow an unfetterd view of the contents without any nasty reflection. The mat is Bainbridge 8667L Colonial Cream ovesize. The box strips that line the inside face of the frame are the same mat board used for the base to which the textile was sewn.

 Framing designed and executed by Julie Kotulak.

 Photos by Brian Flax, shown by kind permission of Corrinne Morrissey.




Exhibition:1968 Vanished Realities, A Document by Stan Rosenstock

 From April 20th through June 24th, there will be an exhibition of photography by Stan Rosenstock at the Eyeporium Gallery at 1431 N. Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago. This show documents the anti-war movement that rocked many cities, including Chicago. Stan Rosenstock was there, documenting it in 1968 . Many of these photos have never been seen before. As a baby boomer, like Stan, we lived through that turbulent era and were not left untouched by it. We know Stan from his calling on us many times over the past few years as a lighting consultant.  The Eyeporium Gallery is open 12-7pm daily and 12-5 Saturday. More information can be found at http://www.eyeporiumgallery.com .


We received an inquiry from an artist on the East cost, Christine Soccio. about stretching a very large painting of hers and shipping it over to Woman Made Gallery, 685 N. Milwaukee Avenue in Chicago, for an exhibition. Of course, we said we'd be glad to do that kind of work and she shipped the canvas to us rolled up. It turned out to be 4 feet wide and 11 feet long. We built a heavy-duty wood stretcher with 2 crossbars to stretch it on, along with a cross-member to which we attached an aluminum Z-bar or French Cleat for hanging. 

One lesson we came away with from this project was the fact that, if you plan to paint something that large, use the heaviest weight canvas you can find. Christine used a 7 oz. cotton, which is fine for anyting up to about 48 x 60". When you get to something this size, we have to pull really hard on the canvas to stretch it and lighter canvases just don't hold up well on edge where we are gripping it with a canvas pliers. Although canvas pliers are anathema to some people, we use them on big canvases to save our fingers.  A 10 or 12 ounce canvas is what should have been used. 

Still, it all turned out very nicely. Here are some photos of the canvas after stretching and detail shots of the back of the canvas:

               Soccio Canvas
 Please forgive the fact that the canvas is upside down in this photo. It is photographed on our work table with someone holding it up at a slight angle from the back edge. The black elements belong at the top of the canvas.

Soccio Canvas Construction Detail 1 










 Soccio Canvas Stretch Detail

  Corner Brace Detail
















       French Cleat Detail-Soccio Canvas

 The canvas was stretched by our shop manager, Dana L. Fisher, CPF

 Stretcher design, project management and photos by Brian D. Flax, CPF

 Image of canvas shown by kind permission of the artist, Christine Soccio.

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