History of custom framing at Lampros Gallery, the craft of photo frames, as we know it, was born in the Renaissance period, a time of enlightenment, great minds began to once again envision the wonders and beauties of the universe and create works to personify those visions and create custom framing here in Texas.

History Custom Framing Lampros Gallery Texas


........"The frame is the reward of the artist" Edgar Degas

Some of the earliest known picture frames date back to Roman times but examples of the craft is extremely rare in that period. It's believed that they were probably rare then as well. As history dictates, following the Golden Age of civilization where artistic thought flourished, there came the Dark Ages, most of the visual art coming out of this period was in the form of murals, depictions of the events of the times painted on walls, much like the cave men produced. Not much need for frames. The more portable items were usually jewelry and religious icons, generally small, easy to transport and in many cases to hide. The frames were usually painted or gilded borders and embellishments, decorative but not a separately produced entity.

The craft of custom picture framing, as we know it, was born in the Renaissance period, a time of enlightenment, great minds began to once again envision the wonders and beauties of the universe and create works to personify those visions. Artists, patrons and craftsmen worked together to produce what exist even today as a tribute to mans capabilities. The importance that the great masters placed on the integrity of a properly finished work and the value the patrons of those artists had in the image they were portraying influenced in no small way the direction and inspiration of the artisan/craftsman picture framer. For five hundred years the craft blossomed.

The industrial revolution began to change the fabric of framing. With the introduction of mass produced art and the growing influence of photography, picture frames started to appear on assembly lines. Inexpensive reproduced artwork on paper became the norm in order to satisfy the needs of the masses and what was once an integral part of the finished piece became the edge from which you needed to connect the wire. Skilled craftsmen were only to be found in exclusive hard to find upscale shops that developed a mystique of being expensive and out of reach for the average person. In the middle part of the 20th century the once noble and dignified craft of picture framing was relegated to hardware store basements and garages in an effort to accommodate a cost conscious society which was more interested in getting something up on the wall than the quality of what it was.

Towards the end of the 1970's and the early 1980's people became more concerned about the quality of what they were hanging on their hard earned walls and the Limited Edition print marked began to emerge. As a result, how that art was packaged started to become a greater consideration. Society on the whole began to develop a stronger appreciation for style. Custom frame shops began to re-emerge to satisfy the need to provide a more sophisticated product.

Economics was still an important issue and large discount departments of craft stores dominated the market. But, in any industry you get what you pay for and large discounters were paying for inexperienced and non-dedicated framers. Temporary part time employees who were there until something better came along made up the bulk of the custom-framing workforce.

As artwork became more expensive so too arose the need for more dedicated professionals to protect that investment. Small shops with an emphasis on quality and education of their employees started to become more popular. More and more people started to look to their picture framers as they did their doctors and dentists.

Independent shops had to define their missions and stay abreast of the rapidly changing standards in the industry. Manufacturers began to provide higher quality products in order to supply these discriminating professionals with the tools they needed to the best possible job for the customer. Trade associations began to offer workshops and seminars to concerned framers and in 1986 the first Certification exam was offered by the Professional Picture Framers Association.

As we traverse to a new millennium we see the industry taking a new turn to once again embrace the old ways and techniques of making frames and to design utilizing modern products and methods to suit the art style and medium and to offer the discriminating consumer the best possible choices for contemporary tastes and lifestyles. In February of 2003 the first Master Picture Framer certification was offered, elevating those craftsmen interested enough to participate to new levels of expertise.

We at Frame Craft / Lampros Gallery are that new generation of dedicated professional picture framers. Our Mission is to stay informed, educate our customers and to keep an eye to the quality of the product we are producing and to advance our craft.

No job is too small to give our utmost attention and skill to.

We Are:
Peter J. Lampros, CPF
David A. Woodard, CPF
Mary Boone, CPF
Vicki Lampros