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The Art’s Grand Arrival

September 8, 2009

During a recent trip to Boston and New Hampshire,  I managed to (very) economically ship home the enormous painting that Melissa and I have traded off over the years.  This long-awaited treasure now hangs in my living room, adding a welcome splash of color and drama and texture to my still-in-progress space.  

Without further ado, allow me to unmask the canvass: 

CLothes 019

This painting was given to me, but when I moved to DC I had no wall large enough for it.  Melissa in MA had space, so I gave her the painting.  Now our situations are reversed; Melissa has no wall large enough in her cute but low-ceilinged English basement apartment.

Trust me when I say this painting is not just large, it’s massive.   So large, in fact, that the quotes for shipping it from MA to DC started at $500 and only got worse from there.  I don’t know about you, but I sure as heck don’t want to blow my decorating budget just to ship a painting that I already (half) own.

So when work sent me north, I visited Melissa and we devised a plan.  A plan some may say was risky.  A plan that probably would have had serious art collectors gasping in horror. 

Here’s what I learned on how to cheaply move a painting:

  1. We pried off the outer frame off the painting. 
  2. Then we carefully removed each and every staple holding the canvass to the stretcher (internal) frame.  
  3. Finally we folded it in half (humidity helped keep the canvass flexible) and rolled it up, packaging it into a long rectangular box that I scored for free at the hardware store.  
  4. Taped it up, marked it fragile, and – voila!  A massive painting just became airplane flight-worthy.
  5. I checked the painting as luggage.  It was too large a box to carry-on.
  6. They covered it in “fragile” stickers.  It arrived in one piece.  Shazam!

Once the painting was unwrapped and rolled out, I wanted it hanging ASAP.  Not just for aesthetic purposes, but also for the sake of the canvass.  There is a slight crease where it was folded. 

But how do you hang a painting without a frame?  Easy!  Binder clips!  I clipped them to the top of the canvass and hung them from screws that I sank in the wall.  It’s a bit rough around the edges, literally, but it works for me.  This winter I’ll build a frame for it.  For now I’m just happy to have it hangning in my living room. 

Here’s the question of the day.  What does this somewhat modern/somewhat impressionistic painting look like to you?Large Painting Close-Up

7 Comments leave one →
  1. Julie permalink
    September 23, 2009 7:35 PM

    I love your resourcefulness! Go Jane!!! :)

  2. Jackie permalink
    September 24, 2009 9:36 PM

    Yikes! I know the challenge of having a large painting that you like work with your other art. Finding/creating other paintings, or artifacts, and their placement to work with it can be difficult. My take is this…let the large painting stand alone on its own wall with minimal surroundings; or if need be, let them be few & proportionately scaled. Simplify what hangs/sets with it on an adjoining wall. The adjoining walls will be difficult to “settle” so remember to keep it simple and in juxtiposition with the original large artwork. I think two coordinating colors that work with the large artwork will set the mood and/or colortone for your adjoining wall decor. Alas, I hope my humble offerings help. And futhermore, what the heck do I know??!!

  3. Rebecca permalink
    September 27, 2009 12:08 PM

    I love that painting….it looks great right there. And I completely agree with Julie. You are one of the most resourceful people I know for sure.


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