Pictured: ‘Peach, 3 and 6’ by Shiwen Wang.
You’ve finally done it: after careful deliberation, you’ve purchased an original work of art. You can’t wait to show off the latest addition to your home, but how do you make sure you get the most out of your painting?
MAPA gives some tips on how to take good care of your art, so you can get the most out of it.
ART CARE TIP #1: SHIPPING & INSURANCE
If, like many people these days, you’ve bought your artwork online, the first step is to make sure it reaches you in an impeccable state. Many galleries, like MAPA, will offer insured shipping with a specialised courier that also packages the painting for you (like Pack & Send). With such an important purchase, you’ll want a 100% guarantee that it’s gonna arrive in perfect shape, ready to go up on your wall.
ART CARE TIP #2: HANDLING YOUR ARTWORK
Once your painting has arrived, make sure to handle it very carefully. Large canvases should always be carried by two or more people. Wash your hands before unwrapping or touching the painting, so you won’t get fingerprints or other dirt on it. You can also wear gloves. Take off sharp accessoires like watches or jewels that might tear the work. Carry your painting with at least two hands from the sides (not from the top), and hang it carefully on sturdy hooks.
ART CARE TIP #3: CHOOSING THE RIGHT WALL
If you want to extend the life of your painting, choose where to hang it wisely. Avoid the following:
In direct sunlight
Close to a heat source
Very cold places
Places with low, high or fluctuating humidity
Places with smoke
Within reach of small children or animals
Choose a dry and safe place.
Pictured: ‘Holdfast’ by Henry Glover.
ART CARE TIP #4: TO CLEAN OR NOT TO CLEAN
If you feel like your painting is getting dusty, it might be possible to gently brush it, depending on the painting. Never brush a painting that shows signs of loose or flaking paint, or a very matte work that’s loaded with pigments.
Oil paintings can usually be dusted using a special, small and soft artist’s brush (3-8 cm wide). Tilt the painting slightly forward and carefully brush in one direction, followed by the opposite direction. Another option is using compressed air in a can to blow away dust. Make sure the gust is not too strong, however.
Never use water or any cleaning liquids on paintings, including damp cloths. Refrain from dry cloths, feather dusters or stiff bristle brushes, too, as they can scratch the surface of the painting. In case of doubt: ask for help or leave it to professionals.
Make sure the brush has soft bristles.
ART CARE TIP #5: CHECK YOUR ARTWORK
Make sure to do a careful inspection of your painting once in a while. If you notice the artwork is fading or cracking, this might be an indication that it’s not very happy on its current wall. Consider moving it to a better place. Don’t forget to check the back for pests or insects, too.
If you find that your painting has been damaged, never attempt to restore it yourself; bring it to a professional instead. After all, you’d take your baby to a good doctor, too, right?
We hope you enjoyed these tips! More advice like this? Check our other articles! Interested in buying an original artwork?