Sunday, March 20, 2011

Mounting Collages to Stretched Canvas

In my last post, I showed how I prepped my fiber collages for display, in this case, stitching them onto some beautiful paper. The reason for that step is twofold: first of all, I knew I was going to adhere the paper to a pre-stretched canvas, and I didn't want the acrylic medium to touch the collages directly. Secondly, I wanted the mounting process to be reversible, something I learned from my framer. Sometimes, I stitch the collage directly on the canvas, if the stretcher bars are not in the way. I did that with my collage By the Numbers, shown in progress below:

Gayle Pritchard's By the Numbers, in progress
  In the case of By the Numbers, the pre-stretched canvas was larger, although I still had some difficulty stitching and embellishing along the edges.

For my current pieces, I am adhering them to two upcycled pre-stretched canvases that I found in a discount store. I used acrylic gel medium applied directly to the canvas, and stretched and smoothed the paper over the top, as shown in the photos below.

Adding gel medium to an upcycled pre-stretched canvas
Each edge and the back stretcher bar are coated with gel medium, then the paper stretched in place. This works with fabric, too!

I miter the corners as I go, using very sharp scissors.

I trimmed around the existing hanging hardware along the top, then separately wired the piece for hanging after it dried.

All done! Here, I am drying the mounted collage overnight. The rubber bands hold it tight, while the scrap paper inserts protect the edges of the collage and paper from the rubber bands.

I had one other piece to prepare, and now I am ready to wrap and drop off my work at the gallery tomorrow. Hurrah! Piecing it All Together: The Art of Collage opens in Chagrin Falls on April 1st, and will be on display at the Valley Art Center until May 19.


  1. Thankd, Judi. Feels good to finish some n ew things, even if they are small, "minor" pieces.

  2. I love this process of mounting them on a stretched canvas... had a young artist today working on her blue monkey collage today and made some small pieces with the leftovers. I really enjoy the tiny Inchies...I plan to mount them onto a small quilt for presentation. I failed to be included in the ODC Best of 2011 but I am anxious to see what the juror selected. I have been neglecting my hand work lately so I need to be more focused. Imagine and Live in Pece, Mary Helen Fernandez Stewart

  3. It is a nifty, quick presentation tool, MH. Looks like you are having fun with those tiny pieces : ) I am lucky to be doing handwork every day. I often save it to the end of the day, so I can sit with my hubby and sew.