Framing "Rue Mouffetard" by Henri Cartier Bresson

"Rue Mouffetard" by Henri Cartier Bresson is a famous example of an important period in the history of photography. 35 mm handheld spontaneous street photography was new. Doisneau, Ronis, Brassai... many photographers roamed the streets of Paris day and night, capturing the everyday life of regular people, taking advantage of the new film and camera technologies of the time. Bresson did it with the elegant touch he is known for.

Composition mattered and also did the so-called "integrity" of a photographic image. The prints revealed the black borders of the film to prove that no cropping had been made, which would have been viewed as an alteration, a manipulation. When framed, the matting has to be respectful of such feature.

Notice the detail of the number "12" label on the bottle's neck (click on the image to zoom in). It refers to the 12% alcohol content of the wine - a proof of integrity of an other kind! In France, for a long time, 12% alcohol wine was nick-named "amélioré", improved, because most "ordinaire" wine was 11% proof or less. I remember hearing men request a glass of amélioré at the comptoir of the bar in the small town where I grew up.

This photograph brought back personal memories and continued my appreciation for classic photographs. I don't know for how long this link will work, but know that Henri Cartier Bresson's work can be seen in a traveling exhibition that honors his lifetime artistic achievement: http://moma.org/interactives/exhibitions/2010/henricartierbresson/#/

The framing design "amélioré" includes: 8 Ply museum mat, Picture Woods® ebony stained walnut profile and Museum Glass. Final size: 24 1/2 x 31 3/4 inches.



On the Worktable

Choosing the mat elements for a design with several vintage photographs that will end up together in one frame.


Before and After: A loose canvas

When art curls, gets loose, or seems misplaced under a mat, you have good reasons to be worried or upset, but, in most cases, I can fix the situation before any harm is done to the artwork.

In this example, the giclée print on canvas made from a painting by artist Dario Campanile "The Last Supper?" (www.campanilefineart.com) was brought to me loose in the framing materials (see below). It was framed in an other state and I supposed that the initial stretching was not tightly done. Over a very short period of time, the sagging only got worse.

When art travels from state to state, it can suffer from the abrupt changes of humidity and temperature. Colorado's dry air usually adds tension to a canvas traveling from an other region.

Below is a picture of the art before I re-stretched and re-fit the canvas: