When you think about interior design, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Usually people think about how expert interior design takes a room from simply matching, to one that looks polished and pulled together. There is a big difference between matching your throw pillows to your shelf knick-knacks, and styling a room so it is a (functional) personal sanctuary.
One of the ways we pull a room together is through art, but choosing and buying art is intimidating to many people. I think many people believe that good art is a huge investment, and for some reason, it feels even more permanent than core furniture pieces. Why do you think this is? I think it is because art makes a statement. The strategic use of art in a space can evokes emotion and add personality while also communicating a homeowner’s style.
Considerations When Choosing Art
Tone: What do you want to say with your art? Art can complement the rest of the décor with a similar color palette, or it can stand out through contrast.
Mood: Art pieces can evoke certain feelings and emotions through their color, texture, and shape. Think about what you want the effect of your art to be. Do you want it to energize the space? Maybe a boldly colored abstract could achieve that. Or would you rather it calm and soothe? Maybe watercolor, or a soft landscape would be appropriate.
Style: Consider your signature design style when narrowing down on an art style. Think about the overall aesthetic of your home. For example, if your home is primarily modern design, you may choose a bold abstract painting. Rich landscapes and still life often pair well with a traditional design style. Black and white photographs have wide appeal, and are a great way to tie together precious photos. However, the most important thing is that you love it. You do not need to get too caught up in “matching” your art perfectly to your design style. Eclecticism is “in” in a big way, and people are taking more and more design leaps in the way they pair their art with other design elements.
Scale and Proportion: When selecting artwork, consider the space it will occupy. Art offers an opportunity to play with scale and proportion, allowing designers to experiment with the dimensions of a room. Oversized art can create a dramatic focal point, making a small room feel grandiose. Conversely, a collection of smaller pieces can add visual interest and depth to a larger space.
Research: There is no rush! You can take your time researching artists and art styles before you make any decisions. There are so many resources to help with this. In addition to hiring an experienced interior designer, you can search through popular art websites, or even peruse rooms you like on Pinterest to see what kind of art is used.
Uniqueness: There are many, many amazing local artists, wherever you may live. Supporting an independent artist is rewarding in itself, but it also supports your local economy and provides you a fun story to tell people that visit your home. Working directly with an artist makes your art choices feel very personal and intimate. Finally, these pieces are often unique because they are not mass produced. One of a kind or limited items truly make your home feel singular.
Budget: When you do your research, you can begin to get a sense of the price range for artwork that aligns with your interior style. Luckily, beautiful art is available in a wide range of prices, and does not need to break the bank to make a statement.
Display: Creativity is not just limited to the canvas. You can also experiment with placement of your art in new and unexpected ways. Your art can stand alone on a blank wall, or maybe you would like to group a few things together. You can hang your art at eye level, or lean a large piece against a wall. Also, proper lighting should be a consideration to ensure that the art is showcased in its best possible light.
Thinking Outside the Frame
We have focused a lot on wall art, like photographs and paintings, but art is so much more. “Art” does not need to be limited to drawings, paintings, and sculptures. Dramatic, architectural focal points can also be art.
Curating an art collection over time can be a lot of fun. Clients that are the happiest with their art choices have often collected pieces that have meaning to them, like something they found on a special vacation.
Art is an integral component that can elevate a room’s design from average to extraordinary. Talented designers can use art to weave a story throughout your home, express your individuality, and create the atmosphere the homeowner is looking for. Hopefully this article has given you the confidence to shop for art, and we are always here to help!
This is part one in a two-part series about finding art and inspiration. Stay tuned for part two!