Guest Blogger: 5 Unique Ways to Display Artwork
Guest Blogger #952, Entry #2375, May 3, 2013
Your personal collection of paintings, sculptures and other artwork is an exciting part of your interior décor. How you choose to display your artwork can greatly enhance the style of a room. There are as many ways to hang a picture as there are varieties of art. Sculptural art can also be displayed in endlessly creative ways.
Whether your preference is to display your artwork prominently or to effortlessly blend it into the background, there are several methods that can help you to showcase your favorite pieces. By putting some thought into where and how your art is displayed, you can draw just the right amount of attention to your unique pieces.
Image via: Cardea Building Co.
Start with these five ways to display your artwork, and don’t be afraid to experiment. Think of your house as a living museum and yourself as its masterful curator.
1. Strength in Numbers
By displaying your artwork in hand-picked groupings you can add a dash of panache. Choosing two or more paintings to display in close proximity can add an intriguing element for viewers. You can group artwork by theme — perhaps displaying seascapes with sea creatures — or by artist or time period. Grouping paintings can also be a highly personalized design choice, as you might choose to display paintings that, when taken as a group, tell a story. Sculptures and collectibles often have more impact when grouped together with like objects. There is something compelling about a collection of anything, and artwork is no exception. Harness the design power of strength in numbers by grouping some of your art and experiment with placement. Remember that your art display can be dynamic; part of the fun is in trying new arrangements and developing your sense of creative display.
2. Get Asymmetrical
A bit of artistic asymmetry can add a sophisticated focal point to any room. While there is an innate human tendency toward arranging things symmetrically, doing the opposite can create a compelling vision. If you have two identical paintings or paintings meant to be paired, try not to display them on the same vertical or horizontal plane. Instead, stagger the display. Elegance and refinement often come from the type of surprise element introduced by asymmetry. You can also use staggering to display three-dimensional wall hangings. Asymmetry also applies to your floor art: Try arranging decorative rugs on a diagonal to the walls rather than directly aligned with them. Because asymmetry adds complexity to the lines of a room, it is indispensible in creatively displaying your art.
3. Set a Mood With Lighting
Museums use the power of lighting to highlight art and create a specific mood. You can emulate this technique at home even without the use of the professional light fixtures used for art shows. Wall fixtures that use LED bulbs are an elegant way to bring out the beauty in paintings and sculptures. LED bulbs come in an array of hues and sizes and are also economical as they use less energy than traditional light bulbs. Lighting is always a go-to method of creating a certain mood. For added romance, consider displaying a painting between two wall-mounted candle holders, and simply burn votives when it’s time for guests. Large paintings, especially, benefit from a source of direct lighting, which can be placed on the ceiling, wall or floors.
Image via: Fred Lassmann
4. Defy Expectation
Quirky art displays can add a jovial element to any room. By defying expectation, you can create a sense of freshness and fun. For example, having a nautical theme in a restroom is cute, but it’s not exactly original. Explore unusual placements of your artwork to break the mold. The unexpected elements will enliven your interiors. Place your artwork strategically where it wouldn’t be expected. Try placing a traditional portrait in the restroom or a bright tapestry on the kitchen wall. Instead of placing magnets on the refrigerator, make it a spot to display a special print. Stay inspired and don’t fear the unusual.
5. Make Cuter Corners
Corners are spaces that often go underutilized in terms of artwork. Many people shy from displaying paintings or sculptures in corners, when in fact the eye is naturally drawn to the corners of a room. Set aside a particular corner in a room and devote it to artwork, perhaps hanging several small paintings near the corner’s edge. You’ll be surprised how much this can liven up a room and create a cute and intriguing focal point. Try to delegate one corner in each room as a space for artwork.
Celine Heath is a guest blogger and writes extensively about interior design and American art.
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