A client of ours, who has traveled in Africa, brought in a carved, silver-inlaid ebony mask for us to shadowbox after he saw a photo of a beautifully framed mask in the newspaper. He brought the article in with the mask. It was an article about Chicago-based financial wizard Chris Gardener (the subject of the movie The Pursuit of Happyness) and it showed his condo at Chicago's Trump Tower. On the wall was a beautifully shadowboxed African mask of some sort and it inspired our client to frame a mask that he had brought back and was planning to present it as a gift.
We selected a Merlot suede (Crescent 7194) mat to use as the shadowbox liner. The frame was a Studio 25001 mat black flat-top wood frame that is 3 1/8" tall overall, with a rabbet height of approximately 2 1/8". Because the mask was nearly 2 1/2", our shop manager, Dana, added another black matte wood frame to the back side of it after ripping off the lip and turning it on its side. This created an extender that added about another inch to the depth, making it ideal. Then, our framer, Julie, sewed down the mask looping black cotton thread through the fold-up shadowbox and over the bridge of the nose of the mask. She also looped black thread through a leather loop on the backside of the mask used for hanging it on the wall.When it was designed, originally, we added a Larson 145252 Ferrosa Pewter fillet around the opening of the frame to echo the silver motif on the mask's face. This gave the frame a richer look. Finally, we used Tru-Vue AR anti-reflective glass to glaze the shadowbox and allow maximum clarity for viewing the frame's contents. Glass size was 7 3/4 x 14 1/2".
Framed mask photos by kind permission of Collin Carter.
Frame designed by Brian Flax, CPF
Framing executed by Dana Fisher, MCPF and Julie Kotulak, CPF