The future of framing, in general and at Julius Lowy in particular

by leslierankowfinearts

Julius Lowy, New York, East 80th Street showroom

In our last blog,  Brad, owner and partner at Julius Lowy Framing Inc.,  will speak about the process of developing new frames and designs and describe a wonderful technical innovation that allows us to “preview” the newly framed work of art.

We’ve explored the history of framing and now we will investigate its future. I welcome all comments and inquiries. Fire away!

DO YOU DEVELOP NEW FRAMES, NEW PROFILES, FOR SPECIFIC REQUESTS? ARE YOU WORKING, AT THAT POINT, WITH THE OWNER OF A WORK,  A MUSEUM CURATOR OR GALLERY OWNER? WHEN DOES A SITUATION WARRANT A NEW DESIGN?

Most of the time, new designs are developed when an artworks needs to blend properly within an architectural setting. In the 1990s, we designed shapes for the Van Gogh Starry Night at MoMA, as well as for Cezanne’s Bathers. These designs were used to complement the design of the museum but have been copied thousands of times over in the last twenty plus years. More recently, we’ve designed shapes for post-war American artists such as Bluemner that have specific shapes and finishes. This has almost always been done in conjunction with the person in charge of hanging a show or gallery exhibit.

LOWY HAS DEVELOPED A VERY INNOVATIVE SYSTEM CALLED THE LOWY SCAN, I KNOW FROM OUR MANY ENJOYABLE CONVERSATIONS THAT YOU ARE PARTICULARLY

SKILLED AND INTERESTED IN TECH AND THE WEB AND ASSUME YOU DEVELOPED THIS TO TAKE THE BUSINESS INTO THE NEXT CENTURY.  I’D LOVE TO LEARN ABOUT IT.

The Lowy Scan system is really quite simple; it’s just a program that allows us to instantly combine any frame from our antique inventory with an artwork while maintaining proportional accuracy. We originally developed the system with IBM research

and development back in 1997, but have recently done a complete overhaul of the system which allows us to produce hi-res images suitable for HD screens. The new system is also web-browser based, and we will be porting a version of it to our website in the future.

WHAT ARE YOUR AMBITIONS FOR THE COMPANY? HOW DO YOU FORESEE ITS DIRECTION AND GROWTH? WILL THERE BE A FOURTH GENERATION OF SHARS CONTINUING THE LOWY TRADITION?

So far I’ve enjoyed a healthy career here in my family’s business, but I’m aware that there needs to be growth and change. I would like to try to use the internet to expand to a more global clientele base of serious art collectors and institutions. As far as future generation are concerned, I want my kids to be happy. If they become interested in this business it would be great, but I’ll support them in anything they want to do. I’ve got a great team currently at Lowy, made up of representatives from four different generations, so I’m confident that between the right people and the right product, we’ll continue to persevere further into the 21st century and between.

I”M CERTAIN YOU WILL AS WELL. THANK YOU FOR THE RICH AND WONDERFUL TOUR OF THE HISTORY OF FRAMING AND ITS CURRENT STATE.  I LIKE TO LOOK FORWARD AND AM COMPLETELY INTERESTED IN NEW WAYS TO EXPAND AND EVOLVE MY BUSINESS AND OUR FRIENDSHIP AND DIALOGUE IS BASED ON THIS CONSTANT COMMUNICATION. THAT BEING SAID, I LOOK FORWARD TO SPEAKING WITH DOUG FLAMM AT URSUS BOOKS IN THE NEXT LRFA BLOG.  ALTHOUGH THE DIGITAL WORLD, IN MY VIEW, IS GREAT FOR READING FICTION, NON-FICTION AND NEWS, THERE IS NO SUBSTITUTE FOR A BEAUTIFUL ART BOOK,  A MONOGRAPH ON AN ARTIST OR AN ARTIST’S BOOK. WE’LL SEE IF YOU AGREE,