I learned a lot about design from my mom. She had an uncanny ability to put together disparate artworks and group them successfully. I remember watching her artfully arrange pieces on out our living room floor, trying all different combinations until one suited her. I also remember my dad cursing under his breath as he tried to hang everything! Multiple nail holes and crooked frames later, the arrangement that looked great on the floor usually didn’t look so hot once it was up.
This sort of frustration is not limited to complex arrangements. Hanging 2 pieces can be maddening, 3 is almost hopeless, and even single paintings can be tricky…they’re often hung too high, too low, or ever-so-slightly-crooked. So what’s a gal to do? The answer is simple but one that never occurred to me before I became a designer: hire professional art installers. Art installers, who often work in galleries and install exhibitions on a regular basis, are a godsend. Not only do they usually have a natural eye for what looks good, but they also come armed with tools and professional knowhow – including better math skills than most of us!
I know what you’re thinking: that must be expensive, right? Not really. To give you one example, I work with a great group of guys here in LA: Watkins Art Services. For less than $200, they recently hung 8 pieces of art for my client in less than 2 hours – including one ginormous antique map + 3 separate groupings that required perfect alignment. Not only were the pieces hung beautifully, but the bottom corners are now secured to the wall with putty so that they don’t shift and scratch the walls. Simply put, these guys are worth every penny.
So the next time you have art to hang — instead of going DIY-crazy or leaving it propped against your walls for months — bring in the big guns. If you can’t take advantage of Watkins Art Services here in LA, check online listings for installers in your area. Then sit back and let them do the heavy lifting.