8 Tips for Hanging Wall Art Like A Pro

8 Tips for Hanging Wall Art Like A Pro

Follow these 8 tips for hanging art like an interior designer to bring a professional style to your home décor. These tips for hanging art will help to express your creativity and personality in your own space without the daunting challenges often faced when hanging art. You will have the tools needed to confidently display art in your home or office.

#1 Hang Art in the Orientation of the Wall

Hang wall art in the same orientation as the shape of the wall. Look at the shape of the wall space – is it long and narrow or tall and skinny?  Your answer to this question will determine how to position art on walls in your space. To position art on walls in your space, the art shape should match the shape of the wall.  Tall and skinny wall?  You will want to hang a tall and skinny artwork in portrait orientation.  Long and narrow wall space? You will want to hang a long and narrow artwork in landscape orientation.

#2 Hang Art At Eye-Level

Hang wall art at the average person’s eye level. Have you ever walked into an art gallery or museum? The standard used by art galleries and museums to hang artwork is the center point of the artwork should be at fifty-seven inches above the floor.  57” from the floor equates to a person roughly five foot eight inches tall (give or take an inch or two.) Following this standard provides a polished and professional look for the art in your home by establishing a visual centerline for the eye to rest upon.

As I discussed in my article, What is the Right Sized Art For Your Room?there are exceptions to this standard rule.  When placing art above furniture (such as a sofa or mantel) position the art at between six inches and 10 inches above the furniture.  Also, consider the height of your ceilings when determining how to position art on walls.  If your ceilings are very low, ensure you have sufficient space between the top of the wall and the piece of art.

#3 Balance Hanging Art On Walls Or In Rooms

Balancing your hanging art means that the placement of artwork in a room or on a wall is not overly weighted to one side or the other giving the appearance of the room or wall tipping to one side.  If you are going to hang a large painting on the left side of the room, balance it out on the right side by hanging another large artwork or a grouping of several smaller pieces that are equivalent in size to the large painting on the left.

To learn more about proper sizing for a balanced look read, What is the Right Sized Art For Your Room?. This will guarantee that your grouping is not too large for the space.  Pick up painters’ tape at your local big box store.  Use the tape to outline your proposed grouping on the wall to visualize the hanging art on the wall before you hang it.

#4 Hang Wall Art Multidimensionally

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Hang art on walls using floating shelves to create a multidimensional layered look.  Do you like the look of an artist’s studio?  Love the way an artist stacks art along walls?  Recreate this look by layering wall art of different sizes and shapes on floating shelving. Not only does this approach allow you to collect art, but you can also more easily change out the art for the season by changing which artwork is front and center.

#5 Use Salon-Style to Hang Art On Walls

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Hanging art on walls using salon-style means creating a crowd of artwork on the wall space that both compliments and juxtaposes each other. As opposed to creating a gallery wall, which is a more formal grouping of curated artwork, salon-style is punctuated by a relaxed and mixed feeling.  This style works well in both contemporary and traditional settings. In salon-style, the artwork traditionally was hung between the chair rail and ceiling. Be sure to not overdo the style and allow for at least 3 centimeters of space between works of art.

#6 Don’t Hang Art On Walls

For an unconventional and contemporary look, lean a large painting or large photograph against the wall on the floor.  The artwork can be a large statement piece alone in a space or part of a salon-style grouping. This look harkens to the artist's studio and is suited well for layering pieces.  Large canvas art and large panel art look particularly good leaning up against a wall.

#7 Avoid Kitsch Art

Avoid hanging art on your walls that is overly kitschy. As beautiful as an art piece may be of a cup of coffee hanging over your coffee pot, the art will always look better than your morning cup of coffee.  Professionals will rarely hang cute baking art in the kitchen. Instead, choose to hang wall art that compliments your style, colors, and personality.

#8 Hang Art On Walls Right-Sized For The Space

Hanging art on walls that is too small for the space is a common mistake that I see in homes.  Art is easily overwhelmed on a large wall or by big furniture.  Art is an investment and large photographs or large paintings can seem expensive, however, you do not want your investment to go unnoticed. In general, art will need to be bigger than you think.  Read my article about What is the Right Sized Art For Your Room? to guide you in choosing the size of art to hang on your wall.

Following these eight tips on how to hang art on walls will have your space looking like it was designed by a professional in no time. You will have the confidence you need for hanging art on walls without the risk of looking overdone or inexperienced.

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