Featured Frame of the Week!

This week’s featured frame is an American gilt composition frame, featuring a leaf-and‐berry top and a panel of intermittent rosettes connected by a geometric stylized design, created by the Philadelphia- based firm of G. Sauter. This piece exemplifies the artistic interest in stylized, ornamental designs and embellished surfaces seen during the late 19th century’s Aesthetic Movement.

Composition frames had grown popular throughout the century because they were easier to manufacture and worked with a variety of designs. The geometric motifs in this frame display the influence of architect and celebrated frame-maker Stanford White, who incorporated architectural design motifs and used European and Asian ornamental forms for inspiration. Most of the time, White designed a frame specifically for an artist or an architectural design project, such as in his collaborations with the American painter Thomas Wilmer Dewing.

This Stanford White frame complements Abbott Thayer’s Angel with its complex tabernacle design (image courtesy of Smithsonian American Art Museum)

With our vast collection of antique American frames and our personal knowledge of the period’s history, Lowy leads the way in preserving the frames that shaped 19th century American art.

2 thoughts on “Featured Frame of the Week!

  1. I have an old family portrait of an ancestor who lived from 1770 – 1855. The frame is from G. Sauter Picture Frames and Fine Arts in Philadelphia. The painting is signed (cannot make out the signature) and dated 1904. I think the 1904 fits the G.Sauter store era (maybe) – but the painting being dated 1904 makes no sense to me, as the subject died in 1855 – and there were certainly no photos of him available from which to make his likeness when he was about 55 or 60 (1825 – 1830). There is substantial restoration except for the face and hands. Wondering if a restorer would have put his signature on the restored art at about the same time it was framed in early 20th or late 19th century?

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