Star Struck is Framed Without Glass

www.kimminichiello.comStar Struck, Watercolor, 12 x 12, 30.5 cm x 30.5 cm, Mounted on Board and Sealed

Last year while I was attending the annual exhibition of the Women Painters of the Southeast.  I visited a gallery where there was a watercolor artist who had mounted her paintings on board and sealed them.  Therefore, there was no glass, mat board or frame.  They were displayed just as an oil would be, painted on a gallery canvas.  I mentioned to the gallery owner how intrigued I was by this since I also painted in watercolor.  She mentioned that many collectors and galleries don’t value or maybe I should say don’t think there is as much value in works behind glass, and many galleries decline works that are. This piece of news was a bit shocking to me.  Really?  One more struggle to overcome for watercolor artists!

I don’t agree with this philosophy so I won’t be mounting all my paintings from now on, but I was still intrigued  and wanted to try it.  After doing some research I came across a video done by artist Birgit O’Connor.  My new work Star Struck I thought would be the perfect candidate to give this process a try.  Essentially, it involves mounting your painting to an Ampersand Clay Board, with a soft gel medium and sealing with and archival varnish with ultra violet light protection.

I like that you can hang on the wall or place on a table or shelf.

I was pleased with the results.   I would like to experiment a bit more as to the final finish on the surface of the painting.  The Golden Archival UVL Sealer comes in gloss, satin and matte.  I am am also curious about the Renaissance wax that Julie Ford Oliver has recently tried, thinking that would give a nice sheen to the surface as well.

As I experiment a bit more I will be sharing the results, going into a bit more detail on the processes that have worked for me. Any artists materials I use,  I am very conscientious  of the archival factor.  I have been assured by all the specifications that  the materials I use for my paintings,  paper, paints, mat boards, etc., are archival.  The materials used for this process, board, soft gel medium and spray sealers also claim to be such.  I know there are a few out there that won’t feel this is adequate protection for a watercolor painting.  But, only time will tell!   At least with the sealer you are also getting UVL protection.

 This painting will be available at the Winter Garden Art Association’s April Exhibition, 127 SoBo (South Boyd), Winter Garden, Florida.


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5 thoughts on “Star Struck is Framed Without Glass

  1. Kim,
    In the 70’s I frequently used a spray varnish intended for Dr. Martens watercolour inks.
    On my detailed illustrations of the time, it provided UV protection, increased the intensity of colour and added a protective sheen with additional coats. It also worked well with coloured pencil. I look forward to your experiments as I don’t like glass framing for larger watercolours.
    regards, Rod

  2. Gorgeous painting AND a Neat post, Kim. I
    t is true that a a lot of galleries do not carry a many paintings under glass but there is a freshness with watercolor which makes it worth while to stick with the tried and true. The museum glass which limits the reflections is quite wonderful but it is so darned expensive. I am going to keep trying new things but I do like the wax.

    • Hi Julie
      The jury is out on the gallery and no glass preference. This was the opinion of this particular gallery owner. I am going to get some of the Renaissance Wax and try it. I wan’t to experiment with it on some smaller paintings.

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