While it’s true that we work in what’s called the cabinetmaker’s frame tradition and regard ourselves as essentially furniture makers, or—the older description I prefer—joiners, who make picture frames, we almost never take on furniture projects. Picture framing keeps us plenty busy. But when Oregon painter Eric Bowman asked us to build a quartersawn white oak Craftsman style screen we agreed. After all, it was to have four of Eric’s beautiful paintings set in to it—figurative oil paintings of Indians which also illustrate the four seasons. So it was, in fact, a set of four mortise and tenon picture frames—not at all out of the ordinary for us. And very much in the spirit of the Arts and Crafts Movement that we and Eric both venerate.
The paintings, which are set off with 1/4″ gilt oak slips, are each 36″ x 20″. Each panel is 69″ high x 24″ wide, so the full dimensions of the screen are 69″ x 97″. Trevor Davis did a superb job building the screen.
Eric Bowman is a exceptional talent, as has been acknowledged with a great many awards and articles (like this 2018 profile in Southwest Art magazine). His hope was that “The Four Seasons” was to be a very special showpiece—literally—being entered in the annual Prix de West Invitational Art Exhibition and Sale at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City, an enormous exhibit, including 88 artists, each showing multiple works. The show took place earlier this month, and all went beautifully. (The picture at right shows it on display.) As Eric’s video below mentions, the screen was a crowd pleaser. And it sold! The second video is an interview with the artist at the show.
Watch Eric Bowman’s interview with Medicine Man Gallery’s Mark Sublette at the Prix de West Exhibition.« Back to Blog