"The Role Of The Frame
"...in the presentation of a picture fulfils some or all of the following functions: the protection of the painting; its display and physical attachment to the wall; the enhancement of subject and colour scheme while remaining subordinate to the picture; the definition of the picture's perimeter and the focusing of the spectator's attention on the subject; the provision of an area of transition between the real world and that of the picture; the creation of harmony with the surrounding interior decoration; and the isolation of the picture from a distracting background. It also exists as a pleasing ornamental object in its own right. The picture frame is the medium through which fine arts are merged with architecture and the decorative arts."
- from A History Of European Picture Frames by Paul Mitchell & Lynn Roberts