Johannes Lutma

More on frames for art by Jeannine Cook

Back on 20th September, I was blogging about framing my art. I mentioned the marvellous riches of historical frames in various museums, especially in the Budapest Fine Arts Museum.

Now I read of a special exhibition of art frames going on display at the Alte Pinakothek in Munich from the Art Daily brief from 19th December. Many years ago, when I spent hours of marvelling at art in the august Alta Pinakothek, I remember being impressed at the diversity and richness of the frames surrounding their very wonderful collection of paintings. I am not surprised that they should have thus curated an exhibition to highlight the art of frame-making.

Apparently they sorted through some 4000 frames and paintings to find the 92 which are on display. They span four centuries and many types, from 16th century case frames to Rococo types, with Classicist and Empire styles in between. Inlaid frames, miniature frames, Dutch cabinet frames and Lutma frames - they are apparently all there to be marvelled at, with additional explanations on frame-making and techniques. For example, Lutma frames were called thus because they were initially made by the leading Dutch silversmith in the 1630s, Johannes Lutma. He would place a cartouche on an elaborate gilded frame at the bottom, with a coat of arms or an inscription in it.

For anyone going to Munich in the near future, this could be a fascinating insight into the complement of art that can so often make or break the initial impact and impression of a piece of art.