I've been framed!
March 2, 2015 6:28 PM   Subscribe

I have a very large (6'x6') piece of amateur art that is made of many large paper cut-outs layered on top of one another with spray adhesive. This art has no actual $ value. I really like it and want to hang it on a wall but I am afraid the layers will quickly peel/curl/wrinkle/rip/fade if I mount the piece on foam core or similar. Framing it with glass or plexi would be (a) expensive and (b) heavy! Any other ideas how I can display this work?
posted by nkknkk to Media & Arts (5 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Have you already tried/considered using some kind of varnish or clear coat to seal the piece? I've used Royal Coat (ebay) and Mod Podge on paper collages before, and I also hear that the Liquitex Permanent Varnish (you probably want the "matte" variety) is excellent for such things. If I were you, I'd go to my local art supply shoppe and explain the situation and see what they recommend!
posted by myrrh at 6:57 PM on March 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

Here's one approach to hanging a large piece of art. I've never tried this, I've just had it bookmarked for a while.
posted by OrangeDisk at 7:56 PM on March 2, 2015 [1 favorite]

I have a big collage made out of post it notes. I sprayed the whole thing with something like this. It's supposed to neutralize the acid in the paper. The collage hasn't yellowed or faded much and we've had it up for maybe five years or so. It's not in direct sunlight so that helps. The collage is on foam board so we framed it by screwing strips of wood in a rectangle on the wall - about half an inch larger than the collage all the way around. We sat the collage in the frame on top of clear sewing machine bobbins so that there would be an equal gap all the way around the piece. (Because that's what I had lying around.) Then we screwed big sheets of plexiglass onto the frame. The frame ended up the size of two stock sheets of plexi from Home Depot. We pretend we can't see the line in the middle where the two sheets meet. I think we ended up spending $40 or $50. (One sheet of plexi to cover the whole thing was going to be well over $100.)
posted by artychoke at 8:27 PM on March 2, 2015

I would try sealing it with a Krylon spray or something similar, personally. It depends a bit on what the paper layers are made from; if they're something like newsprint/a paper that isn't acid-free, you're probably still going to want to hang it out of direct sunlight if there's no UV protection in front of it.

You might be able to just tape the piece to your wall with a border of washi tape, if it isn't particularly heavy, or if you use enough layers of Krylon or Mod Podge to make it stiff, you might be able to use binder clips to secure it to the wall.
posted by tautological at 8:31 PM on March 2, 2015

6'x 6' is a very rough size to mount, as that's larger than nearly all stock sizes of foam core, mat board, plexiglas, and glass. That's why it's so expensive to frame.

If you'd brought this into the framing shop I used to work at, I'd try:

-Self-adhesive foam board for a backing; probably have to butt two sheets together to get 6' x 6', then use regular foam core supports on the back to hold the two sheets together, in the shape of a square, in the center. Adhere the supports to the board with Super 77. If I had spare Gatorboard scraps lying around, I'd use those for the supports.

-Spray matte varnish on the art itself to seal it, since it will have no protective glass or plexi.

-Then I'd use some swiss poster clip hangers. Get four corner pieces, then 16 more middle clips (4 to a side).

-Use a crap-ton of heavy picture framing wire to attach the clips to the back, like in this image.

-When you hang this, put three 50# hooks in the wall in a horizontal line, level with each other. Don't try to hang this on only one hook; it will shift like crazy every time you walk by it, and on alternate Thursdays.

That's my best solution for a middle ground between archival and ruinously expensive. If you have questions or need a diagram, feel free to MeMail me.
posted by culfinglin at 9:33 AM on March 3, 2015

« Older Best medium to start a "platform" for my self-help...   |   I don't undertand the WWII Enigma code Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.