Framing Peder Monsted

I’m very behind on blogging on some of the great jobs we’ve done over the past months. Here’s a spectacular winter scene—the Peder Monsted I showed the frame for on my Jan. 2 post and promised then to write about soon. Monsted was a Danish painter, born 1859 and died 1941. This work is “La Punt near St. Moritz, Engadin Valley,” 1919. Oil on canvas, 50-1/2″ x 79″. Framed in carved Cassetta—10″ total width, in quartersawn white oak (Dark Weathered Oak stain), with slip and insert in white gold-leafed oak.

Peder Monsted painting, "La Punt near St. Moritz, Engadin Valley,"

Peder Monsted, “La Punt near St. Moritz, Engadin Valley,” 1919 51-1/4″ x 79-1/2″.

Three artists all saw it while it was here and (this sounds like a joke, but it’s true) the first one remarked, “Look at the snow! Do you know how hard it is to paint snow like that?!” The second one said “Look at the water! Do you know how hard it is to paint water like that?!” and the third one said, “Look at those trees! Do you know how hard it is to paint leafless trees like that?!” We concluded that this painting, which one of the painters estimated would have taken Monsted the better part of a year, was a tour de force for the artist—a display of his technique as much as a work of praise for the beauty of winter in St Moritz.

A good example of how a bright scene is served by the foil, or complement, of a dark frame—although the frame’s not too dark but is consistent with the values in the shadows. While an all-out piece of workmanship that fully honors the painting, it doesn’t upstage it but delivers the eye to the painted scene.

The cassetta frame has 4 mitered inner moldings, including the liner, and a mitered cap molding, on either side of a mortise-and-tenon flat, as well as a back frame to build it up leaving no gap between the wall and the frame.

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