You love art and art collecting, but what do art collectors do when there isn’t enough room for every piece of artwork you own on your walls? It’s easy to think that putting the surplus in a closet, basement, or attic is the solution. It might be time to think again if you want your canvas artwork to last and remain in good condition.
At the Thomas Kinkade fine art galleries in Carmel, Monterey, and Placerville, we’ve put together tips and tricks to help you find the best way to store your paintings at home or in long-term storage.
Best Ways To Store Paintings
- Lightly Dust Each Canvas Before Storage
- Choose A Cool, Dry Place To Store Your Art
- Keep Stored Art Out Of Direct Sunlight
- Store Your Canvas Upright
- Separate Canvas Art With Acid-Free Boards & Paper
- Keep That Wall Art Off The Floor
- Mirror Boxes Are Great For Large Artwork
- Avoid Leaving Extra Space Around Boxed Wall Art
- Document Stored Paintings
Lightly Dust Each Canvas Before Storage
You’ll want to keep dust off of stored artwork, which means you’ll want it to be dust-free before it gets wrapped and put away. Use a soft cloth to carefully remove any dusty buildup or other debris.
Choose A Cool, Dry Place To Store Your Art
Moisture, heat and widely varying temperatures can all damage paintings. Water can encourage mold growth and mildew damage. The cold and heat can cause your canvas to repeatedly expand and contract and, eventually, warp.
You’ll want a temperature-controlled storage unit or area of your home where the temperature and humidity are easy to control and keep consistent.
Keep Stored Art Out Of Direct Sunlight
When deciding where to store your paintings, you’ll also want to avoid direct sunlight. UV rays can fade your wall art and break down canvases over time.
- Oil Paintings: Oil paintings are probably the most sensitive to the fading potential of direct sunlight.
- Acrylic Paintings: Acrylic paintings are not as susceptible to UV damage as oil paintings but can still lose vibrancy and experience canvas deterioration.
- Watercolor Paintings: Watercolor paintings need to be kept out of the sun too. You’ll want to make sure that any mountings are acid-free and that the artwork is stabilized before storing.
Store Your Canvas Paintings Upright
You don’t want to lay wall art horizontally or stack pieces on top of each other. When you lay paintings down or stack them, you risk canvas sagging and the stretcher bars pressing through and leaving imprints on your artwork. Horizontal storage also encourages more dust collection.
Separate Canvas Art With Acid-Free Boards & Paper
Separating paintings that are stored together from each other is also important. You don’t want the paint to rub off, frames to chip and flake, or glass to break. Wrap each piece in acid-free paper and place a sturdy, acid-free board in between each piece.
Be wary of any other packing material you use. Some tapes and glues can leach through to your artwork, causing stains or yellowing.
Keep That Wall Art Off The Floor
If your floors are concrete, moisture can be wicked up by the canvas in your artwork. Leaving stored paintings on the floor also makes them more susceptible to pests, dust, dirt, and damage during a flood.
Mirror Boxes Are Great For Large Artwork
Pick up some mirror boxes if you have larger paintings or artwork that you want to be especially careful with. This type of packaging is designed for fragile mirrors, which makes them great for other fragile valuables.
Avoid Leaving Extra Space Around Boxed Wall Art
Once you have your canvases wrapped and boxed, you’ll want to fill in the surrounding areas with packing materials. You don’t want to leave your paintings any wiggle room.
Document Stored Paintings
Lastly, if your collection is insured, you’ll want to document each piece before storing it. Take pictures or videos and re-check each canvas periodically, updating your documentation.
Add To Your Art Collection In California
If you’re ready to add to your art collection or replace stored pieces, stop by and see us at the California galleries of Thomas Kinkade today. Our knowledgeable Art Consultants will be happy to answer your questions about the best ways to store and move your fine art paintings.