On the Worktable

Touching up a white floater frame. A delicate task beacause the finish must remain unaltered. Floater frames help create fantastic presentations for contemporary art. They work ideally for works on canvas and on hard board that have finished outside edges interesting to expose without any cropping at all as without compromising the protection of the art.


Art Installation Services

During a recent installation assignment, I had my friend and assistant Greg take a few promotion photos. The fact is that it is hard to convey what art installation service really means without the support of photos that show specific display styles, before and after, etc.

Installation work now accounts for about 50% of my business. I really enjoy doing it because it enables me to develop a more comprehensive service and it enables a better understanding of a client's taste in art and lifestyle. I also enjoy getting out of the shop!

Art installations create true space transformations. Weather it is in a home, at a workplace, or in a public space, the impact of a new art display is simply immediate happiness. Can't pass on that!


Our Lady of Refuge

This painting was presented to me unframed and the stretchers had been removed. Not having much information on a piece of art of that nature compelled me to suggest a professional appraisal.

The only description that came with the painting was from the online dealer, which simply stated: "This is a rare, original, late 18th century oil painting on canvas. Its size is 22.5 inches by 18 inches, and it has a canvas backing, to reinforce the original it is painted on. It was recently professionally cleaned and restored by the former curator of the Cuban National Museum of Decorative Arts, who now resides in Miami, and is a specialist in Spanish Colonial paintings."

I was very interested in hosting an appraisal at the shop because I knew that, along with the client, I would learn a lot about the painting and the appraisal process itself. The appraisal was conducted by Barbara Stone. She is an authority on ethnographic art, fine art, and world antiquities.

Barbara Stone inspected the painting in great detail and quickly confirmed the authenticity of the artwork as a Mexican Colonial oil painting on canvas. The art probably came from a convent or a church. The painting contains typical elements of the genre: the crowns, the posture of the virgin Mary looking straight at the viewer, the standing child Jesus, the absence of background between the faces, and the shape of the clouds (puffy and solid looking). Barbara commented on the recent restoration work and qualified it as excessive but not irreversible.

A few days later, Barbara Stone produced a detailed appraisal report with photographs and references. Her additional research helped place the painting in the 19th century, painted by an unknown artist. The subject is based on "Our Lady of the Oak", found in 1690 in Montepulciano, Italy, and later used as a reference for religious painting in Mexico. The name "Our Lady of the Refuge" originated in the 18th century, when plagues struck Europe and people felt the need for protection.

Framing Design
3" Sevilla Antique Gold frame enhanced with 1/2" Medici Waterguilded filet. Museum Glass. The framing was conceived to minimize contact of the canvas with any materials.

If you wish to learn more about Spanish Colonial art, go to the 4th level of the Denver Art Museum.

Barbara H. Stone ISA, NAPA, President
Art International Resources LLC