Bee Cave framing company Wexel Art keeps its laser cutter cranking to produce virus shields

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The virus shield can be easily installed using an adhesive. (Courtesy Wexel Art)
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Wexel Art's virus shield was installed at Austin Sports Medicine and Orthopedics. (Courtesy Wexel Art.)

Bee Cave business owners Natasha McRee and Morgan Doherty launched Wexel Art 10 years ago, specializing floating acrylic frames designed to showcase a variety of artwork.

“Wexel is a German word that means change,” Doherty said, explaining the company’s unique product allows for the ability to change a piece of art.

As the community weathers the storm of the pandemic, Wexel Art experienced change itself. While the company is still regularly fulfilling orders for frames, it has adapted its business model to produce acrylic virus shields.

The medically recommended shields create a barrier between essential employees, such as cashiers and customers completing their necessary shopping trips. Recently, the shields have been used by a number of grocery stores.

“We really wanted to do something that contributed to the betterment of the world right now,” Doherty said.

One of the advantages of being a smaller company has been the ability to stay nimble, according to Doherty. It was a matter of one week before Wexel Art successfully implemented the new product.

Wexel’s virus shields launched on the company’s website and are also made available through Amazon. McRee and Doherty have seen nationwide sales as well as local customers, including fellow Bee Cave business Austin Sports Medicine and Orthopedics.

McRee noted the shields are fairly simple to install, offering a larger version that should be bound to the wall and a countertop version that utilizes an adhesive backing.

“When you have 10 years of experience in acrylic and all of a sudden the recommended barrier is made out acrylic, it lets us tap into our expertise while also doing good in the world,” McRee said.

By Amy Rae Dadamo
Amy Rae Dadamo is the reporter for Lake Travis-Westlake, where her work focuses on city government and education. Originally from New Jersey, Amy Rae relocated to Austin after graduating from Ramapo College of New Jersey in May 2019.