How to create a gallery wall at home
Not sure about buying and exhibiting artwork? interior stylist Joan Thornhill shares her tips for organizing your own collection.
Empty walls can seem intimidating, but the pressure of what to fill them with can be too. Here are the key things to consider when building your own art collection…
The first step
First, clarify your goals: yes, you want to fill your walls with things you like the look of, but also think about how you would like your art to make you feel. If you’re looking for a calming ambiance, designs with similar tones to your room will bring less visual distraction. If you want to create a scene-stealing focal point, something with an element of contrast is a better bet. Perhaps you would like to spark happy memories by commissioning a portrait of a loved one or selecting pieces that depict (literally or as an abstract nod) a favorite place.
Then, shop wisely or be crafty in commissioning: while buying art can be accessible to any budget, the trick is to think outside the box if your funds are limited. Postcards and ephemera can be collected for peanuts and given gravity by putting them in a frame from a charity shop.
Limited edition prints are usually much cheaper than the originals, while still retaining an element of exclusivity.
Choosing canvas rather than unframed prints avoids additional framing costs. Art fairs and auctions can be a great, more affordable way to discover emerging artists, so keep an eye out for any events in your area to make connections with local artists.
If you’re looking to invest in a bespoke piece but are budget conscious, contemporary artist Emma Tweedie (emmatweedie.art) advises providing the chosen artist with a written brief and images of the piece the piece will be in. work will be exhibited. support and materials are agreed in advance, so you get an accurate quote.
Finally, organize your display: whether you opt for a gallery wall or a single piece, try to hang your selections so that the center of each work is roughly at your eye level.
For a gallery wall, apply this rule to your center piece, then work outward from there (if in doubt, lay everything out on the floor until you’re happy with your setup before committing on the walls). Symmetrical arrangements will create a sense of order, although for added visual friction the asymmetry will give the eye somewhere to travel.
Above all, the most important thing is to create a display that you like and brings you pleasure. When in doubt, take fashion and interior designer Matthew Williamson’s approach: “Your walls should look like a mosaic of your life – a patchwork of images that describe your essence.”
How to Display a Gallery Wall at Home
If you’re worried about creating something that looks chaotic, stick to the same style and color of frames all over your gallery wall (or consider painting existing mismatched frames the same color to “trick” them into uniformity). ). Fill in any awkward gaps with a few unframed postcards and Polaroids to give an air of informality.
Are you feeling brave? Be playful with your layouts: try off-centering an original piece of art or pairing two pieces of vastly different sizes together for a whimsical look. Here black accents (on the small frame, in the larger illustration and as trim in the console) have been used to anchor the scheme
Try not to limit your “art” to framed prints or painted canvases: think outside the box and create a more stimulating scheme by incorporating 3D objects or decorative plates to help break any blockages.
ADDITIONAL STYLE POINTS
Wall colors and decorative touches can really support and enhance an art curation: here, nature-inspired artwork is complemented by greens and blues, a wooden console table, woven rug and foliage .
The art can absolutely work over a wallpaper background, but to keep it from being overwhelming or competing with your photos, stick to a simpler pattern or design (or place an artwork minimalist on a busier background).
Hang or hang?
If you’re renting or are conscious of putting too many holes in your walls, consider installing a picture ledge instead, which only requires a few screws and can hold an ever-changing collection of multiple prints. You can also opt for removable picture hooks from command.3M.co.uk, which can be removed without damaging the walls.
READ MORE: How to declutter your closet
IMAGE: READ McKENDREE/JBSA, VEERLE EVENS, RACHAEL SMITH PHOTOGRAPHY. ILLUSTRATION: NOLA CAMPBELL, DESIGNED BY KITESGROVE, EMMAJANEPALIN.COM