Monday, November 24, 2008

IMO - ProPanels

Occasionally I run across a product or item that just really wows the funky-colored socks off me. This time, it was a group of display panels by ProPanel.

As you may have read, I was director for a local Christmas art exhibit. I had organized an exhibit at this venue earlier in the year and as part of the set-up personally hauled and covered enough easels to display over 100 pieces of art. Whew! I was not looking forward to having to do that again.

Because of a very generous donation, we were able to purchase a small set of display panels and on the recommendation of several fellow artists and mentors, we chose to go with ProPanels. Plus, as part of this particular exhibit, a friend loaned us her booth-sized ProPanel set up along with lights and extension cords.

I cannot say enough good things about these panels! The company was helpful with questions I had, and other than shipping being a full quarter of our budget, the panels are wonderful! Because they are so lightweight, I managed quite easily to set up the entire panel structure myself, and the braces and supports all slid easily into place for a very sturdy unit to hang the artwork on. The simple Velcro fasteners held legs together, cords in place and were a snap to use (I mean really - its Velcro). Take down was just as easy with two people disassembling the entire set of panels in about 35 minutes, including removing the artwork and lighting.

If you're planning a purchase, make sure to invest in a few extra braces or support bars to maximize your options when you have room to be flexible. And what I didn't realize, too, is that the anchor hangers can be extended on either side of the panel so you can hang artwork on two sides without requiring a second anchor hanger (you will want to have plenty of hanger extenders though - it took two extensions plus the length of the anchor hangar to hang two smaller paintings). For short extensions, you can also link together the "s" hooks to form a chain extension if you haven't got enough straight bar extensions.

I had hemmed and hawed over the new cable system vs. the traditional straight rod system but am perfectly happy with the versatility of the traditional system and would actually recommend them over the cables. I work regularly with a cable studio system but for this venue prefer the traditional flat hangars.

They also offer a range of imaginative and useful accessories for those that want a variety of display options. If you do booths, displays or trade shows, I would HIGHLY recommend these panels for their versatility and functionality.

This review was neither requested nor sponsored by anyone. I did not receive any product or other recompense. I wrote it because I tried this product and wanted to share my impression(s) of it.

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