Recently, at the kind invitation of one of our artists, we gave a presentation to a large group of artists, collectors and art enthusiasts at a prestigious club in Atlanta about breaking the rules when you’re buying art. We know there are lots of preconceived notions that people have about buying art, and we love to stir them up! Despite our initial jitters about speaking to such a grand audience (and a looming fear that some of our personal emails would pop up on the big screen while we were shuffling through slides!), we had a great time breaking the rules for this nice audience and decided to share the presentaiton with you.
So here are the top 10 rules we love to break when buying art — and the one overriding rule that we will never ever break.
Old Rule: A large room needs a large painting (and a large painting needs a large room). Wrong! Look how impactiful it is when you put a large painting on a small wall, like hung between the two windows below:
Old Rule: A small space needs a small painting, or small paintings need to be in small rooms. Wrong again! You can add visual interest by building around the painting, creating a collection of smalls on a big wall or hanging the painting alone on a big wall:
Old Rule: Paintings need to be hung, over mantels, or consoles, or on walls. Wrong! You can have so much more fun and flexibility if you don’t limit yourself to just hanging art!
Old Rule: The style of the painting should match the style of the room, i.e. traditional art in a traditional decor and contemporary art in a modern decor. Really? That’s our favorite rule to break, because nothing looks better or creates more energy than a dynamic mix!
Old Rule: Paintings should work with the theme of the room. You mean, nudes in bathrooms and still life paintings of fruits in a kitchen? We don’t!
Old Rule: Groupings should be of similar paintings or “Objets.” No again! We love the mix, and the more elements, the merrier.
Old Rule: Keep gallery walls symmetrical. We say, why?
Old Rule: You can’t match the sofa! Aha, gotcha. You know we’re supposed to tell you not to match the sofa, but guess what: There’s nothing wrong with it! We like our colors to work together, so whether the art drives the sofa (our preference of course!), or if the sofa drives the art, we’re good with matching — as long as you keep our number one rule that we never break in mind.
Old Rule: If you don’t buy it now, the artist can always paint another one like it. Don’t believe that for a second! Just talk to any artist about how they feel about repainting a painting, and you’ll get the answer to that rule. Remember the paintings that got away from us? We’re still haunted by our desire to have them!
Those are our top 9 rules we love to break … and the one rule that we’ll never break is:
Buy what you love! Because when you buy the art that you love:
- A big painting will work in a small space
- A small painting will work in a big space
- It’ll work propped, hung, stacked or stored
- It’ll complement any decor
- It’ll be happy in any room
- It’ll live well on a gallery wall
- It’ll hang with every kind
- It’ll work with today’s and tomorrow’s sofa
- And it’ll make you happy every day, because it didn’t get away!
Take it from us!