Preserving fine art prints - artetrama

Preserving fine art prints

, 1 min reading time

As for preserving fine art prints, there are several factors that every artist, collector or professional should consider to prevent damage which, in many cases, is irreparable.

Regarding climate, it is more appropriate a cold environment and not too damp to prevent the growth of microorganisms such as fungi or bacteria and also to prevent structural deterioration of the paper. The best conditions would be at about 60% relative humidity and 20°C temperature. It is important that these conditions change as least as possible, since high fluctuations can cause ripples on the paper. Other environmental factors such as pollution or greenhouse gases can also cause damage to the paper, so it is very important a good framing or storage.

On the other hand, we must take care of the light that falls directly on our works. An excess of luminosity excess can cause discoloration of pigments and oxidation of the paper. As for artificial light, it should be avoided a direct incidence of UV light sources such as halogen bulbs and fluorescent tubes, however there is no danger in using tungsten bulbs.

Another factor to consider is the acidity. When there is an excess of light or humidity, certain acid elements and lignins that belong to the composition of the paper itself can cause oxidation. To prevent excess acidity it is essential that all elements that may come in contact with the paper, framed or stored, have a neutral pH. While framing, sealing must be perfect to avoid damages caused by environmental factors and the glass should never touch the artwork since, with time, it could end up sticked to it. Storage should be done using alkaline rigid folders and avoiding excessive weight on them so the pressure won't cause any damage. Regarding the manipulation of the work it is best to use cotton gloves to avoid oily spots that can turn out yellowing the paper over time.

Keeping in mind these factors we will ensure an optimal preservation of our print collection over the years.

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