Pastel Care Guide
Pastel is an art medium in the form of sticks and pencils. It consists of powdered pigments and a binder. Pastels were first manufactured in the 15th century and mentioned by Leonardo da Vinci in his work. There are still pastel art pieces from that time that are in great condition! However artwork in pastels is delicate and has to be handled with special care.
You can compare a pastel painting with “wet paint”. It’s prone to smudging so it’s best to not touch the surface! Pastel artwork will be shipped and protected with acid-free glassin paper which prevents this from happening during transport. Please frame the artwork as soon as possible behind glass to protect it from accidental damage. Take note that the surface should not touch the glass. This can cause pasteldust to stick to the glass and still result in damage. You can use an acid-free mount or spacers to avoid this. I would advice a double mount which creates a “gutter” where excess pastel dust can fall into. This would prevent the visible mount from getting dirty.
Beware of Acrylic- or Plexiglass frames. The electrical charge created by these materials can pull the pasteldust off. I would advice to use real glass. For the least reflection and best preserving qualities, please refere to museum quality glass.
It’s advisable to never hang any artwork in direct sunlight. The heath can cause humidity and damage the work or fade colors. Therefore, do not hang a pastel painting in moist areas like a bathroom or kitchen.
These tips will help you protect the artpiece and keep it beautiful for ages! For help with framing, please consult a professional framer. They will know best what materials and techniques to use to protect your artwork.