Parkers celebrates 100 years with new technology

In the centenary year of Parkers Sydney Fine Art Supplies we speak with Derek Parker about the brand’s latest products for artists. Parkers is a one-stop shop for product advice in the arts, the family run business has served artists in The Rocks foreshore, at the National Art School and in Redfern with both a warehouse and framing workshop where you can experience innovative approaches to framing and canvas stretching, as well as traditional options.

What are the advantages of an aluminium support over a traditional canvas stretcher?
Aluminium stretchers have been available for some time and we have recently sourced a Dutch Design renowned for its simplicity and stability. The aluminium stretchers offer unparalleled stability especially across larger dimensions and artists can be assured that their work will leave the studio and be resistant to various climatic conditions that may challenge conventional timber stretchers.

Derek Parker at the warehouse, Redfern 2019. Photograph: Warwick Deane

Are there other materials in this ‘family’ we should know about?
Yes, the aluminium composite panel. We intend to launch two products utilising this material. One, an aluminium panel adhered to a timber support is a versatile and extremely portable support for artists. The second, an aluminium panel seamlessly folded in a 30mm wrap around an aluminium support is the perfect contemporary frameless painting option.

Why are they a reliable choice for artists?
Paint films often undergo stress resulting from hydroscopic expansion and contraction due to changes in humidity and temperature (such as challenging domestic locations like damp walls or fireplaces). The new aluminium panels offer a great alternative being weather resistant and stable. Two strong sheets of aluminium are bonded to a solid polyethylene core measuring approximately 3-4mm. The panels have a smooth white pre-coating ready for paint or can be lightly sanded to receive a more absorbent ground.


The Museo aluminium and timber stretcher bars have been enthusiastically received by leading artists and galleries, who have adopted these in preference to traditional timber for stretching their linens and artworks. During the Biennale of Sydney, the Museum of Contemporary Art exhibited a 4 x 8 metre artwork that we stretched using the aluminium system with incredibly accurate results.

Photograph: Parkers Fine Art Supplies. Instagram: @parkersartsupplies