United Picture & Frame Co
Family owned since 1959, Pasadena, CA
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Plein Air Frames

The term "plein air" is a French expression for "open air" often used to describe the practice of painting outdoors.  This practice gained popularity during the late 1800’s as a result of the impressionist's emphasis on working with natural light and the introduction of tube paints that could be used outside without drying up.  The American impressionist painters who took to the hills and the fields to capture nature were hence referred to as plein air painters.  In contrast to their European counterparts who typically used elaborate frames, the American plein air painters preferred simple wide gold frames with a relatively small degree of low relief carving.  Heavily influenced by the Arts & Crafts movement, frames bearing these classic American designs have come to be known as plein air picture frames.  We offer one of the largest selections of American plein air frames available anywhere.