How To... Create Gallery Walls

Don't be afraid to think outside the box, says Bella Miller owner of Fairlie's 77 Art + Living. 

I sat down with Bella this week to get her take on all things art, how we can step out of our comfort zone and spend our days looking at statements we love. 

Gallery walls are a great way to display all of the amazing works you’ve collected over the years or a great way to start showcasing a new collection.  It doesn't need to be overwhelming. "Hallways are a great space to use as your own gallery, don't be afraid to go floor to ceiling and even showcase artwork around corners." There are really no boundaries when it comes to art - a love of the piece and confidence can help you pull anything off. 

Group smaller pieces together to fill a space and do not feel limited to stick to matching frames and sizes, add in some ceramic or sculptures to give some texture and depth. Bella suggests odd numbers when adding sculptures to your collection. Mix things up and let go of the idea of perfect or matching, people can be so worried about pieces clashing that they start to overthink the whole process says Bella. Start with a purchase of something you really love, use your current artwork and frame some of the children's artwork to throw in some low cost fun. 

A curated art collection should invoke memories and feelings, it's telling your journey. A reminder of where you've been and what you've seen, it only needs to speak to you. Although this can be interesting when you and your partner have different taste or views as Bella notes "Charlie my husband and I have very different taste at times, there have been some questionable purchases over the years but now I can look back and these items are all part of our story." It all becomes significant. 

Art doesn't have to be a huge financial investment but now, more than ever people are seeking and happy to pay for unique NZ made art that invokes a reaction in them.                                                                                                        
There is one area Bella suggests we do invest in and that is framing. Museum quality, UV resistant and reflective glass has a cost but on original art and unique irreplaceable pieces it will protect. Like your fixtures and furniture the sun will slowly but surely deteriorate artwork and this is something that should be kept in mind when selecting a hanging place. This usually means that you are also keeping art out of the glare and reflection so you are actually seeing the artwork throughout the day, rather than a reflection from the window. 


Fall in love with your artwork and flaunt it proudly. In the era of online shopping there is nothing quite like browsing a gallery in person and the way a piece of art can grab your eye and jump out at you. 


Thanks to Bella - 77 Art & Living, 77 Main Street, Fairlie 

Photo credits: 77 Art & Living, Posh Pennies & 83 Oranges

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