If there is one thing I love about art (setting aside the pretentiousness that sometimes surrounds it), it’s that it’s completely subjective. What I might find beautiful or powerful or awe-inspiring, you may find boring or confusing. And what you adore, I may be completely apathetic to – and that’s absolutely okay! But it’s not always easy to find art that you love that works well with the style you have in your own home. Choosing art for a space can sometimes feel a bit of a battlefield and I know so many people who have simply gone without because they don’t know what to choose to place on their walls which to me is a huge shame.
In my opinion, every room should have some kind of artwork on it’s walls. Art will lift a space, make it feel more complete, tie up a theme or create some interest on a blank wall. It can add colour or movement or texture to a room that is lacking in any of these things. It has the power to evoke emotion or bring a sense of calm to a space. It can take a plain space and make it spectacular. This is the power that art has in a room.
But what if you are struggling when there is so much art out there to choose from? I thought today I can share a few tips to help you narrow down your choices and to allow your own room design to dictate the kind of artwork you should be looking for.
Bold and Graphic
If you are going for a graphic scheme with lots of colour, consider a graphic piece of art within the same colour palette that keeps things beautifully tied together. While the artwork chosen here has a lot of visual movement, the room looks pulled together rather than chaotic because all the colours in the artwork are balanced elsewhere in the room. Notice as well that the bold stripes of colour are picked up in the cushions and mimicked again on the rug. When using a lot of graphic patterns in a space, it’s important to keep the colour palette tight and look to the mood your room evokes to capture the same spirit in the art you choose.
In a space where organic shapes and natural bohemian patterns exist, create a sense of calm with the artwork you choose. Here, a modern boho space is echoed in the artwork with a oversized photograph of a sea view at sunset. The space is relaxed with plenty of texture, plants and subdued colours – similar to what we find in nature. A large photograph taken on holiday can be the perfect match for your own living room setting.
Old World Glamour
If your style is more traditional or takes it’s cues from old world glamour, then perhaps a vintage oil painting is just what’s needed to tie your scheme together. Here, the deep colour on the walls is complimented by the dark colours of the night scene in the oil painting above the sofa. While this might look old-fashioned in another setting, it looks entirely up to date with the addition of a velvet sofa, cowhide rug and brass coffee table. Try online auctions, antique shops or thrift stores for similar artwork.
If you already have a piece in the room with a repeating pattern in your textiles, why not find (or create!) art that replicates that pattern somewhere else? Here, bold round circle doodles on the wall repeat the bold round circles of the rug. This can be done in any kind of pattern, however – from large florals to soft botanicals to stripes and everything in between. Take cues from the patterns of pieces you already have and replicate them in a smaller or larger scale on your walls – and this is important in terms of scale. If the pattern is the same size, they will fight for attention so make sure if your existing pattern is small, you go larger with your artwork and as the case here, vice versa.
If your style uses only a very limited palette, neutrals or monochromes as shown here, then a bold contemporary piece of art may be just what’s needed to add statement making style to your space. Using eye-catching statement pieces creates tension so consider going bold if your room is playing it too safe. It will create a fresh, exciting look that will contrast beautifully with it’s surroundings.
So those are just a few ways you can choose artwork for your home. What do you look for when choosing art? I’d love to hear from you!