Monday, June 29, 2009

Art placement?

What makes some people better at placing art than others? Is there really a better way?

When I was a child I often heard people say (and still do on occassion) that art should be hung at eye level. This is quite confusing to a 4' tall child standing next to a 6'4" man, and still is at my full grown 5'2".

I entered a restaurant the other day that had a small picture on one wall. The eye level would have been for someone at least 6'6" tall and the piece was so small that it looked like a post it note on a refrigerator. You had to be standing on the table on the other side of the room, with binoculars, to view it comfortably. This is, by the way, frowned on by the owner of the establishment and no matter how much I tried to expain my reason he just wasn't understanding.

So, for all you out there not sure what to do, here are a few simple guildlines.

1. Small wall: small art

2. Big wall: big art or tight grouping to give the effect of 1 large piece

3. If art is placed over furniture or a chair rail, the bottom of the art should be 3-11" above the object. I find that 6-7 " works for most pieces.

4. If not over anything: What are you doing primarily in the area? Standing or sitting?

a. If standing : Pretend the art is a mirror reflecting most adults chest up. If you are in a "Mutt and Jeff" situation, as I am with my spouse, imagine the art as a reflection of how a photographer would capture the two of you standing side by side. For those of you not old like me and don't know who Mutt and Jeff are, put a tall and a short person together.

b.If sitting: Place the art where it can be viewed COMFORTABLY while sitting. You don't want to be straining your necks to see it.

Art is to be seen and enjoyed. Placed well it enhances the art as well as the room it is in, and that will make us all much happier!