A dining room is kind of a public space, most likely formal. It’s always a great thing to add an artistic flair to your dining room, as it is actually a room that is seen by many guests, either friends or family members. Pieces of art make the perfect conversation starters to warm up the atmosphere. The best artworks will reflect your style and taste, but should also complement the decor of your dining room. Here are a few tips to choose and display art to complements your dining room.
1. Identify the spaces or surfaces you want to fill. The art you choose should be in scale with the space it hangs in. To make it simple: you’ll want large artworks for large spaces — over the sideboard or mantle — and smaller pieces for smaller spaces. Art pieces don’t have to be gigantic: they can be simple statements that are noticeable without overwhelming the viewer. While a painting should be the focal point, it doesn’t have to be the only memorable feature of the dining room. If it does, people may come away with only the massiveness of the artwork as a memory, instead of the overall beauty of the surrounding space.
2. Decide on a theme, or a color scheme if you haven’t already. You have to define the mood, or identify the one you’ve already created for the room over time. Would you opt for formal elegance? Or a casual space filled with eclectic furniture and accessories? If you like to have guests and you’re used to set a sophisticated table, consider sticking to a few sober pieces of artwork in the dining room so you won’t overwhelm your guests.
3. Look for artworks that complement your defined theme. For example, you can include one large focal piece or a group of several smaller items. Breathing space is necessary to maintain an open feeling. The nature of the work itself is up to you. Large abstract painting and photography work well in a contemporary decor, while still-life or nature landscapes will fit into a more traditional set up. As a dining room is kind of a social environment, it’s best to avoid anything too controversial. Still lifes are fine, but dead animals are probably out, same goes for too-explicit nudity. Landscapes are always an option, but making people comfortable doesn’t necessary mean hanging boring art.
4. Frame the pieces well, especially if they’re paper. use archival-quality mats and seal the backs. Wether they’re watercolor, drawings or paintings, framed artworks tend to stand up very well on their own on dining room walls, so no need to overdo it.
5. Check your art pieces once in a while. As light changes during the year, a piece may find itself in direct sunlight for a while, increasing the chances of colors alteration.
(Photo Credit: Design by Beckwith Interiors, Photo by Kim Sargent)