Few people fully appreciate how abstract art can complement their home living space. If you want to impress visitors to your home, displaying the right piece of art will do the job like nothing else. There's no need to clutter up your walls with paintings, removing all the empty space. A judicious piece of art mounted here and there though will make your bare walls so much more interesting.
Put Your Art First
The first thing to consider is that you should not feel intimidated by how you display your art. You will want it to complement your existing furniture and décor, but remember your ownership of the art is likely to outlast these. You should instead focus first on buying the art you enjoy and displaying it to its best advantage. You can do this by making use of lighting, ceiling height and wall space to create the right ambience. Sometimes you’ll want the piece to blend in with the décor and add serenity to a room. Or you might prefer to use the artwork as a shock tactic, a vibrant splash of colour that creates a memorable focal point.
There are no hard and fast rules, and it’s not even necessary to understand every aspect of the artwork. As long as you desire it and continue to enjoy it that artwork has its rightful place in your home. Don’t feel you have to subscribe to some pseudo-intellectual perception of how it must fit in with your existing furnishings. It’s your home, feel free to place your art how you feel fit. The artist won’t have set any rules on its display. So you shouldn’t let any purported art aesthete criticise how you’ve displayed it, or try to argue that you don’t understand the piece. Buying and displaying art should be fun and rewarding, not a fearful experience. That doesn’t mean you can’t be aware of some simple tips to enhance your art’s natural aesthetics.
Why Home Décor Is Easier With Abstract Art
One advantage of abstract art is that its very abstractness makes it easier to combine with the existing look and style of a room. Abstract art often fits in better than more representational art with a room’s diverse furniture and objects d'art. Animal or sports-themed art often places restrictions on the décor of a room in the endeavour to maintain a consistent look. With abstract art, the lines and forms are more easily assimilated into the home style.
If your room has made use of one or two accent colours, than it can be a good idea if your artworks assimilate well with these. The effect can be stunning when your artwork picks out your room’s accent colours and helps to establish them as the dominant theme. But the most important point to remember is that you shouldn’t feel intimidated by the art. You are the master of your own home and there are no real rules when it comes to mounting and displaying art. How colours affect the mood of a room will be the subject of an upcoming blog.
Some Practical Tips
It's good to be aware of certain practical considerations. You might want to hang your artwork so it receives natural light from a window. Just make sure the raw canvas doesn’t deteriorate under long exposure from sunlight. Most modern acrylic and oil paints resist exposure to sunlight well and won’t fade or crack. But if you hang a watercolour in direct sunlight you must expect the paint to fade over time. Even framing it with UV-resistant glass only minimises the damage. All watercolours are doomed to fade, even in indirect light. This is one reason why oils and acrylics are the ideal paintings to embellish your home.
Interior designers will often add a large mirror to a small room to create the illusion of space. A mirror can also increase the light in a room by reflecting the ambient light. This is a useful tip to remember for those rooms which face away from the sun. If you’re hanging art in such a room, adding a mirror may help bring the artwork out with extra ambient light. In some cases, you may not need a mirror at all. Artworks created with bright vibrant colours have a reflective quantity of their own. Such works propagate the available ambient light in a room.
The dimensions of a room can make all the difference in determining the best way to hang art, in particular the height of the ceiling. Strong vertical lines in an artwork can enhance the sense of height in the room. Likewise, a room can appear wider if the dominant lines of an artwork are horizontal. These effects are magnified if the artwork takes up a large proportion of the visible space of the wall.
It’s often recommended that paintings are hung dead centre of a wall, leaving acres of white space all around. But this isn’t always the best way to display a large piece, especially if it’s intended to complement a central piece of furniture, for example a sofa. Instead it’s often better to fill the space above the sofa, creating a beautiful harmony between artwork and sofa. Never be afraid to use the defining forms and themes of an artwork to emphasize a room’s signature fixture. Let your art live and breathe in your room.
Deciding where to display your abstract art shouldn’t be a chore, but a fun exploration of your home’s interior strengths and weaknesses. If you pay attention to lighting and don’t drown the piece in blank wall space, you shouldn’t go too far wrong. Don’t waste time fretting about where you decide to hang your abstract art; there are no rules - just follow your heart.
Decorating a Small Living Room with Abstract Art - ideelaert.com, April 5, 2019
What Large Abstract Paintings Can Do for an Interior Space - ideelaert.com, April 9, 2019