How our wallpieces weather outdoors

Do our wallpieces go outdoors? The answer is generally yes. There are some colors that fare better than others out of doors, but in general, the patinas represent a fully reacted layer on the surface of the metal, so they won’t change too much over time, barring major pollution, roof runoff, or salt fogs on the coast.

We have had good reports back from people who have had pieces installed for years. However, we ourselves haven’t hung that many wallpieces out of doors for long periods in the past, but now we have one good example that has hung for several years on David’s back wall – a western exposure in Berkeley, California, quite close to the San Francisco Bay, with lots of afternoon and evening sun, rain through the winters, and fogs off the Bay direct in from the Pacific.

We recommend that outdoor pieces have their wax re-applied every year or so. However, we did nothing to this piece for about four years.

Here are the results.

Wallpiece 05.45 as it was when first made, and as seen on the website:

And the wallpiece as it is today. It visited a couple of galleries, was on different walls indoors for seven or eight years, then was hung on the back wall for almost four years. (As you probably realize, the fence I photographed this on is completely new wood, not the place the piece has been hanging.)

The biggest differences in the patinas are in the black and dark green; the black patina used in both of these is somewhat water soluble, and has thinned over the years. The wax on the piece is also less glossy, which makes a big difference to the black part, which started out buffed to a gloss black.

There is also a bit of white buildup, probably mineral deposits from the water or from dust in the air, which have adhered to the surface and do not come off with a careful rinse. This is more noticeable on the brown patina, and at their worst on the bottom edge where water dripped off.

Overall, the piece is in great shape, and still looks fantastic. I would expect very little further change for many years outdoors, and more regular care and waxing would probably mitigate even this degree of change. If you are interested in a piece for hanging outdoors, ask us first about the particular patinas in the piece, but most will do this well or better.

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