Demo Lesson

Chapter 1

1. Navigating the Presentation

2. Introduction

Chapter 2

1. General Guidelines...

2. General Guidelines (cont.)...

Chapter 3

1. Choosing Artwork

2. Hanging and Displaying...

Chapter 4

1. Choosing Accessories

2. Choosing Accessories (cont.)

3. Displaying Objects

Chapter 5

1. Grouping Artwork...

2. Growing Good Energy

3. How Does the TV Fit In?

Chapter 6

1. Summary

2. Conclusion


Grouping Artwork and Accessories


Framed artwork grouped on a mantle
Framed artwork grouped on a mantle


Displaying one large painting or accessory probably doesn't seem like too much of a challenge, but what should you do if your clients want you to display a stack of framed photos or their entire seashell collection from Hawaii? If you have a collection of similar objects, it's helpful to group them rather than dispersing them throughout the room. You can arrange smaller photographs together in similar frames, or place shells and vases into a group.


Grouping art, photographs, and objects thematically can help you bring order out of chaos. Group items that share a common subject or process—a grouping of sports or travel photographs, artistic sketches, or watercolors of sailboats, for example. Try to avoid mixing different styles of art together unless you're very sure of what you're doing. Traditional watercolor landscapes are not the obvious companions for modern abstracts. 


To display a group of objects effectively, establish a grid so that all the pieces put together form a square on the outside. Or create a center line that runs vertically or horizontally through the grouping. To anchor a collection of paintings or photographs together on a wall, unify the framing. Using white mats with all white or all black frames is a good way to pull a disparate collection into a group. 


Room interior with artwork
Common matting and frames tie pieces together


Before you hang a group of items, lay them on the floor to fine-tune the layout. No matter how high the ceiling, most of the time you want to hang the artwork at a comfortable eye line. Where that is can vary depending on the setup of the space. See figures 14.18 and 14.19 on page 451 of your text. If the group of prints were hung at eye level for a standing adult, they wouldn't fuse into the grouping of the table and chair. Hanging them a little lower, just above the table, is much more effective. Notice figure 14.20 on page 452. By making use of the ledge, the grouping unites with the architecture in the room and the sofa. If you're hanging a group of framed pieces on a wall opposite a staircase, you might want to center it from the perspective of a person standing in the middle of the staircase. Your goal is to direct the eye in a way that seems natural, not jarring or strange.


So far, we've talked a lot about art and objects as accessories, but there's another category of items that make great accessories in any space: plants.