Saturday, October 31, 2009

hand-made storage

Before my open studio event earlier this month, I went through a bunch of my works on paper, sorted some out and displayed a lot of them that I haven't exhibited previously. That part was great. The not-so-great part was having to wrangle with the poor storage options I had for these works. There are good archival storage box options out there, but most of them are more expensive than I'm ready to deal with for studio storage.

I was in one of the art supply stores I frequent a couple of months ago looking for archival boxes good for long-term storage. They didn't have any in stock at the time, but the clerk I spoke with suggested using acid-free foam board and archival linen tape to make my own boxes. I thought about it and finally got around to making one this week. My first box (see photos above) measures 24" x 32" x 3" to accommodate the 22" x 30" sized works, like 'Blue Pool' in the second shot. I spent about $32-$34 in materials (acid-free foam board, archival linen tape and white velcro for fasteners) and spent almost three and-a-half hours to assemble it. I expect to improve on that time as I do more of these. The cost of good archival storage boxes in a similar size hovers around the $90-$100+ range. Of course, mine aren't made to last 100 years, but they will still go a long way towards protecting my drawings and other works on paper while in the studio for a long time.

I still need to make about one or two more in the same size as well as a couple of smaller boxes for immediate use. The one above is filled already with works I did this past spring and summer. Making these boxes is a little time-consuming but worth it for me. Now that I have the first one done, I have a better idea of what to expect and hopefully, the next few will be easier to construct.
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