Your passion for art doesn’t need to be confined to one room. Rather, with care and a canny eye it can extend to your entire home, from the kitchen to the bedroom and beyond. Collectors who embrace this attitude find that their homes grow into an extension of themselves, a totalized vision and a space where visitors feel at ease and invigorated.
But what art suits which room? Should a nude go in the kitchen, a still life in the lounge? While art and the home are forever personal, there are some rules of thumb to keep in mind. Here are our interior design insights.
It’s in the name: the living room is where you live. It’s where guests spend the bulk of their visit, families congregate and the dog wages war with her toy. Its physical and psychic centrality to the home can mean that the tone you set here permeates the entire house.
With this in mind, choose art that feels connected to your family and their interests. Talking pieces are a good idea, as are eye-catchers – something big, bold or emblazoned with a story. You want to curate a space that feels simultaneously warm, inviting and intriguing, like the perfect dinnertime conversation.
When it comes to displaying art at home, the kitchen is too often neglected. As the heart of the home, it needs – nay deserves – the presence of art. This doesn’t necessarily however, mean that you should reorientate your most serious pieces to the kitchen. Rather, this room, in all its happy chaos, lends itself best to levity.
Whether humorous, pretty or joyful, art in the kitchen can make mornings easier. It injects warmth and European charm into the most laborious of Sunday stews. Whatever your taste, opt for pieces that complement not overwhelm – Monday mornings are frantic enough.
Our tip: In a delicious curatorial twist, some collectors display still lives of food in the kitchen, creating a punning dialogue between life and art.
If the kitchen is suited to more demure works, the bedroom demands expansiveness. A setting for rest and relaxation, it’s central to your wellbeing. Typically, the eye doesn’t want to be overwhelmed here, gravitating instead towards abstract works or landscapes, awash in a soothing palette.
If however, tranquility isn’t for you, go for something bold, loud and idiosyncratic. For some, the bedroom is a place of solace, for others it's about intimacy and free expression. In terms of placement, you may find above or directly across from the bed packs the most punch.
Constance Stokes, 'Untitled (Reclining Nude)'
In the last year, home offices have taken on a newfound resonance. The rush to adapt to a changing world saw people set up conference calls on their dining room tables, convert storage spaces into workplaces and try, sometimes haphazardly but always necessarily, to build mental and physical barriers between working from and being at home.
One way to observe this boundary, is to invest in a home office that feels aesthetically separate from the rest of your home. And by populating it with its own selection of art, you can curate a space that is not only practical, but inspiring.
Works that suit the home office best are typically quirkier, more surprising and intellectually rich. They’re generally not risque, but can take aesthetic risks. The aim here is to maintain morale, motivate and communicate what makes you and your work worthy.
Lesbia Thorpe, 'Terraced Houses Royal Parade'
Our tip: The art you populate your home with can transcend your walls to speak to your neighbourhood. For those in Melbourne, there's Lesbia Thorpe's 'Terraced Houses Royal Parade' – a highly collectable ode to the city's iciest winter days.