Word to the wise


CGF, Certified Grumble Framer
Sep 28, 2001
Miami, FL
I frame for a collector of naif, sometimes called folk or outsider art. It's very powerful and often expensive despite initial appearances-which can be rough.

One piece had been around for awhile and he really wanted it re-framed so on this last trip I finally picked it up. He purchases most pieces at auction and the info is usually still on the back which was the case with this last framed piece.

Back in the shop as I started to look at the frame I could see original paint on the sides of the frame itself which was nothing but a flimsy wood frame hand painted white. The art was a canvas stretched over a piece of wall paneling.I had just inserted a wedge into an open joint to start to pry it open when I thought to stop a minute and just take advantage of this wonderful thing called the internet and check this art out. My customer is fairly cavalier about it all - he has a huge collection.

I found the artist's website and right there - on the home page there was info about a series whose value was touted as being higher because they were still in the same frames the artist had painted them in! Asking price $20,000. Yikes!

I called the gallery up and as it turns out the piece I had was not one of them and the gallery had re-framed many pieces and to carry on with what I was doing. He didn't advise taking the canvas off the wall paneling though. But it just shows to go you. You never know. . .