Care & Feeding FAQ

Care & Feeding

Q.How should I care for my new print?
A.Platinum is a precious metal, like gold, which isn’t generally affected by outside contaminants; however, the paper substrate can be harmed by any number of things. To forestall deterioration, we use only the highest quality papers for printing media and thoroughly wash our prints after development and clearing to remove any contaminants.

Prints should not be permanently mounted to backing boards, and care should be used to select only 100% rag, archival quality matting products. Also, prints should be protected with glass or special UV-blocking acrylic, with a windowed mat between the glazing and the print. With reasonable care, a platinum print can be expected to last for centuries—long after a standard silver or inkjet print has faded.

Q.What should I ask the framer for to ensure my print won't be damaged over time?
A.First, ask if they do “archival” matting and framing. If they don’t or they don’t know what archival matting and framing is, find another framer. If they say they do, probe a little further. They should use 100% rag (so-called “museum grade”), unbuffered (or lightly buffered) mat board for the backing board and mat. They should use archival mounting corners or archival grade tape to attach the print to the backing board, and they should absolutely not hot mount or otherwise permanently mount the print to the backer.

We prefer metal frames because they will not “outgas” harmful chemicals, but high quality wooden frames will also work. The glazing, whether glass or acrylic, should be UV-blocking and held away from the print by a windowed mat. Finally, the print should not be flattened under heat, and a dust sheet attached to the back of the frame will further help keep contaminants out. Any good framer, especially one that deals with antique prints and/or print conservation, should be able to do the job well.

Q.Can a print be replaced if it is stolen or damaged?
A.We keep detailed records of every print sold, including the negative number and printing “formula,” so we may replace prints for the original owner at our discretion. If at all possible, the original print should be returned to us (in whatever condition) to help in matching the reproduction as closely as possible. If the original cannot be returned to us, the replacement will be marked as such on the reverse. If we do have the original, however, the replacement will reissued from the original’s edition with the original’s edition number, and the damaged original will be destroyed.

We take great pains to ensure all of our prints are stable when they are shipped, and they should not degrade over time if properly mounted, matted, and framed and displayed in a normal living environment. However, we do understand fires, floods, and other tragedies occur, and we try to assist our patrons whenever possible. Mounting, matting, and framing are not included with the replacement.