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Fine Art/reframing an original 1923 print


Hi Dolly,
  I have an original 18x30 1923 Maxfield Parrish print. (Daybreak)  I don't like how dark the picture looks with the dark original frame.  (although, I love the picture) Would I be making a big mistake if I had it reframed and matted. (the originals were not matted.)  Should I store the original frame in case I decided to sell the print down the road?   Any suggestions would be helpfull.
Thank you, Denise

Dear Denise,

I hope this finds you well. Overall, I would highly suggest that any vintage or antique paper art that is in original framing should be professionally removed and reframed using archival materials. The art can be reframed in the original framing once the matting and/or backing has been replaced with non-acidic paper or materials.  

Considering your particular Parrish print, there is no reason why you cannot add a mat if this is the look you prefer. It is YOUR art and you can frame it any way that you wish. Just make sure you have a good framer who is skilled in fine print mounting and preservation. I have seen many valuable prints foolishly mounted (glued) to backings or to the mat by framers who do not understand the proper conservation of fine art. There are many art and frame franchises that anyone can purchase. I would be concerned about the owner’s of these franchises knowledge of the care of fine art. I suggest you ask how they would handle and reframe your art before leaving it with them.  

I think you should retain the original frame in case you decide to sell the piece at a later date. There are many collectors who seek art in period framing.

Best regards,

Fine Art

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Dolly D Headley


I can assist with identification, acquisition, sell representation, and care of fine art prints and original paintings. Some of my artist specialties include Henri Toulouse Lautrec, California Artists, and the Modern Masters. I can also assist with information on getting professional appraisals and authentication.


Dolly D. Headley, owner of Headley Fine Art, LLC, has provided consultative art services to retail gallery clients in Sausalito, CA, and at since 1998. With over 14 years experience as a Senior Art Consultant, Gallery Director, and an extensive art research library; Ms. Headley has provided hundreds of people with her high quality personalized consultation services and solid guarantee of satisfaction. Dolly is a volunteer at Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art.

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Bachelor of Science; Self taught with thousands of hours research and retail gallery consulting. Personalized mentorship from various experts in the industry.

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