View Full Version : Longevity of a Painting; Archivalness; How Long is Long Enough?

12-18-2009, 10:01 PM
I came across two very different views recently. One artist said fifty years (that was fine for him -- if his paintings were good for more than fifty years, he was happy with them). Another spoke of centuries, or even thousands of years; and he constructed his paintings with this in mind.

What are your thoughts on this?

Is it worthwhile to aim for at least a thousand years, in choosing materials for a painting? Two thousand years? Five thousand years?

What do clients and others expect in this area?

What do they have a right (so to speak) to expect? -- what is a reasonable expectation?

What is the ideal? And what is practicable?

12-18-2009, 10:44 PM
that is for each artist to decide.

computer printers are mostly printing stuff that lasts 5 years and yet i see people on the street selling prints that are matted and framed. The mat and frame are worth more than the print but they stand in nyc selling it.

If the market buys it.
I got $100 dollars in sales in 2009 on small pieces. The people will spend more on framing it than they did buying it from me. But I know I use fairly safe materials.

They wont pay me a fair price for my work but I give them a good painting. They dont know and dont understand the diferences of good "paint" or good art.

They see what they like and buy it.

KNOWING whether the paint will last is a good question the artist should be able to answer. And the artist will decide if it is decent to sell.


12-19-2009, 04:52 PM
I would not touch this question with a 10 foot pole - just asking for trouble - I no longer give my opinion on these discussions HOWEVER that said I will say that I do research various products and I always try to use acrhival - acid free museum quality materials. I paint on the best archival Belgian linen panels I can find and I paint with Professional Chroma Atelier Interactive Acrylics I like the way these two things work for my desired results and for my style which is Impressionisim - sometimes with a touch of semi-abstract. I paint fast and alla prima mostly with palette knife 70% of the time and the other 30% with brush.
How long should a painting last?????? That basically is up to the manufacturer of the materials that you decide to use. Thier processes and ingredients determine the life of the finished product.
I know painters who do not use isolation coats on acrylic and they do not use varnish - will their painting not last as long as those who do use these finishes - who the hell knows - it's kind of a crap shoot. I just feel better about my work and myself if I always try to use what is SUPPOSE to be the best based on my research. Could my research be flawed or could the material presented be flawed -- hell yes --- but it give me the comfort level I need!
I wonder if they will have garage sales a 100 or a thousand years from now?????