Frame conservation. Picking the right frame to match artwork from centuries ago. The Art Institute of Chicago has an employee with the title of Assistant Conservator for Preparation and Framing. Kirk Vuillemot has been restoring and creating frames for the museum since 1986.
The Art Institute’s asked him five questions in their post post, “Meet the Staff: Kirk Vuillemot:
- What path brought you to the Art Institute?
- How often are you finding and conserving original frames and how often are you creating new frames?
- Are there framemakers who are renowned for their work? Is there, for example, a Rembrandt of frames?
- What’s the most rewarding part of your job?
- Do you have a favorite frame? Or time period?
He gives insightful answers for each question. I’d love to read an entire book by him talking about various frame treatments. My wish is for Kirk to give a gallery tours, talking about frames in the Art Institute’s collection.
In the meantime until my framing dream has been fulfilled, here’s a couple more articles about Kirk and his work:
- Whistler, Roussel, and Frame Design • Art Institute of Chicago, 9/15/2015
Details on the frame selection for the James McNeill Whistler and Theodore Roussel exhibit
- Conservator Works On The Edge • Chicago Tribune, 3/30/2001
The last question in this interview, Kirk makes a wonderful pun.
- Secrets inside aged frames for masterpieces 1 • Di Yin, 9/3/2012
Check out some photos of the wood collection at the Art Institute’s Conservation department.
- Secrets inside aged frames of masterpieces 2 • Di Yin, 9/3/2012
Learn about the special “Ripple Making Tool”