MAJOR HELP!!! Air vent moisture dripped on art


SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer
Jun 13, 2002
Fingerlakes Region of NYS
I don't beleive this.

It is the hottest - I mean HOTTEST - day of the year. And the a.c. is working overtime... I had 3 small canvases out on the worktable to stretch. I had a customer come in and then my ad rep. I go back to continue on and the middle piece of art (obviously an inkjet "giclee") had 5 huge drops of moisture on it and the ink has run.

These are Asian and I have no idea where/when she got them and how much they are worth.


What do I do!??!

Are they signed/numbered? If not, I don't think a giclee print on canvas is going to have a huge value. The most difficult part will be for the customer to acquire another one.

I'd start with a call to the customer to tell her what happened.
I feel for ya, Roz!

Right now I’ll bet you’ve got a hedgehog just nibbling away at your stomach lining.

I don’t think there is much you can do to the original giclee except come clean with the customer and offer to replace it.

I dread those kind of calls. But, be assured that you are not the first framer to have to make one.
meanwhile, do you have time to post a picture? Maybe one of us will recognize it and can steer you towards a source.

Best wishes.
Then I'd put one of those plastic "air deflectors" over the vent. I'm not sure you want the air that has blown past condenser coils and through the (possibly) dusty tube of your ductwork out over your worktable onto whatever project you're working on.
Wow Roz, so sorry that happened, but I like Meghan's idea. Maybe we can help you help a replacement.

I had water run down the front of a watercolor once, (it had been raining and I found out the windows leaked!) but the artist was there with me when it happened. We both looked at each other in complete disbelief.

Long and short is she forgave me, and has come back since! So call and tell her, and give us some pics and we'll try to help you!
Between posting and coming back - I did call the customer and explained what happened.

She got it on ebay - and I did find an ebay store that carries this type of thing - but not this particular image. I see the value is less than $10!! So that part is good. Now finding the same or similar print that she will be happy with.

Not as huge a disaster as I first thought.

BUT... the big BUT!! Where did the water come from?! It is so wierd - the vent is an air vent - a ways from the furnace and there is no indication of water on it or the plastic air deflector that was on it. Just these big drops that seem to have come out of no where.

It does concern me for future work at the table... and I do put protective boards over items I am working on if I leave them overnight - but never - NEVER - had any - ANY - problems in the past.

I am truly baffled with this.


You're being coy about the artist, hmmm, was it a TK? If so maybe god spit on it!
Maybe condensation from the air conditioner, if you have one. This sometimes happens when the AC has to work extra hard on particularly hot days. They may even "freeze up".

We have a TERRIBLY leaky roof. Landlady is (supposedly) working on getting it fixed. Last rain it didn't leak. Until 4 days later, and on a sunny HOT day, it started drip-drip-dripping. Weird!

Glad things are working out after all, Roz. Whew! Can you move your work table?

No it's not a TK!! That's funny that you thought that.

It is a "vintage" Japanese image of water crashing on a rock by the ocean. And it's small - the print is on an 11 x 14 with black borders and the Japanese writing on a narrow yellowish border surrounding the image.

Val - Can't move the work table!! But the a.c. unit is out back, there is attic/crawl space - nothing that would produce moisture overhead... it is wierd!! (music from Twilight Zone is playing in my head)

Thanks for your concerns, all!!

Do you have central heat & air?
If so, the drain at the bottom of the coils is probably clogged and the tray that collects the condensation is full of water. The drain must be cleared or you may have more than a few drips coming out of your vents, such as mold in the unit and structural damage around the base.
Originally posted by Bob Doyle:
You're being coy about the artist, hmmm, was it a TK? If so maybe god spit on it!
LMAO! I bet that's it!
Here is the print, if anyone has info - I would truly appreciate it:


And you can even see the **** water spots in a semi-circle (the shape of the vent!)


Adds character, right!??!

The spots to the picure or the stress it gave me!!
You are all too funny!! TK!? Not.

I will have to check the a.c. water tube and see - like I said - Hottest day in 50 years here!!

And - I am the only one here today. And I don't allow any - repeat ANY - drinks or liquids on the work table - ever!!

The gremlins did it.
Didn't they just have a typhoon over there! Maybe that's how long it took to get from there to here :D

It's the Heat Roz - can't even think or talk straight today.

my 2 wet cents

Roz, on these extremely hot days it still could be condensation from that air vent if AC was running. Cold air in duct work (Uninsulated duct) hot air in attic or ceiling space = condensation in ductwork and water finds a way to lowest level.

Same thing as condensation on the outside of your cold glass of iced tea or lemonade on a hot day.

If it is a drop ceiling it might not be to hard to relocate the duct/vent from overtop of your fitting tables.
I hate these kinds of stories - they make my stomach hurt because they remind me how easily horrible accidents can happen.

Roz, I'm glad you and the customer are working this out and that you can replace with something similar for not too much expense.

The art sorta looks like Utagawa Hiroshige. Didn't the ebay listing give the name of the artist? Maybe it's a modern 'in the style of' thing.

Would it be possible to scan the piece, photoshop out the spots and print on canvas?

Or how about - 'Hey, it's a wave. Ya gotta expect a little splashing. Interactive art, doncha know?'

Good luck and please let us know how this works out.

As I write this, there are 3 men on a ladder in my shop, trying to discover where a roof leak is coming from. They seem to think the original leak is on other side of the building, and running along the duct vents and, aren't I lucky, dripping right in the middle of my shop. A lot. Again, "traveling condensation" now, rain in the winter.
It's a drop ceiling, like yours, and a flat roof. Landlady's been trying to fix that for several years! Good luck. And please wish me the same, before something awful happens in here too. I'm running out of places to put the work table where it DOESN'T leak!
JPaul - I think you hit the nail on the head.. We took the vent cover off and the drops continue at very infrequent intervals - but drip still the same.

Now how are the giclees going to hold up in moisture situations if they are just ink jet and that ink RUNS - terribly. And fading? But as Kit suggests, it is a wave - I will talk to the customer about "blending" the waves, ur, drops into the waves!!!

Thanks everyone..