A Frame With a Nod to a Chairmaker

My friend Jim Whitaker painted this 12″ x 16″ watercolor for a mutual friend, who asked me to frame it. The image includes a beloved family heirloom Victorian chair. Jim Whitaker watercolorThe painting is simple and asked for nothing more in the way of a setting than a nice neutral mat and simple wooden frame. But for a frame-maker devoted to the frame as real woodworking—that is, to the art of cabinetmakers’ frames—a piece of fine woodworking that’s the subject of a painting is an irresistible cue for the frame design. Thus, a 3/4″ wide frame in mahogany stained to match the chair, with a decorative pattern at those all-important corners fashioned after the curly ornamental details that distinguish the piece of furniture. One simple carved cut articulates that corner pattern.

It’s a frame-maker’s nod to a picture-maker, as the frame always is, but in this case to another fellow-artist as well: a chair-maker.Corner detail, framed Jim Whitaker watercolor

Corner detail, framed Jim Whitaker watercolorFramed Jim Whitaker watercolor

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