Art and Soul
Choosing art for your home.
When I moved from the UK to my new home in France, most of my collected art and prints seemed to sit nicely amongst the rooms of my Charentaise farmhouse. Five years later I moved to Spain and somehow my pictures did not look so comfortable. They seemed wedged and awkward amidst their new surroundings. Wherever I decided to place them, they all looked out of place. I abandoned my rustic eclectic and free wishy-washy French look. I had to start again. But how and where should I begin.
First Mistake – Art as an afterthought.
Many new homeowners to Spain will often arrive with minimum furniture and rush off to buy sofas, new beds and tables, habitually choosing art as an afterthought and a need to fill in a blank space. I must admit, when you urgently need something to sit or sleep on, wandering around looking for art seems to be a bit of a luxury rather than a necessity. I took myself around large furniture stores looking at room sets, and I was struck at the bad and cheap pictures displayed behind the sofas and beds, with little or no thought other than to fill up a bit of white wall. I did not want that look for my apartment.
Nothing was shouting out to me and saying, ‘take me home, so I returned to my apartment, opened the terrace doors and looked outside. Then it hit me, there was my colour scheme and I wanted to bring it inside to blend with my interior. I started to make notes. The buildings outside were painted ochre yellow and a deep red. Typical of Spanish buildings. These were earth colours and appeared bold against the bright blue of the ocean and sky. In the background were mountains tinged with grey, beige and a muted soft green, in the distance were the white sails of boats, bouncing white flickers of light off the blue Mediterranean Sea.
Lucky for me I can paint abstract and here was my colour pallet, so I went to buy my blank canvas. Here was my starting point and for three weeks I stared at it hanging on my wall. In my head I started to understand what was needed. As soon as I could visualise my painting I worked around that image and my interior started to fall into place.
Not everyone has the courage to create their own painting, but you can start looking for artists that resonate with you. An original piece of art that you love will add some class to your home. However, it is not always about having to have something expensive hanging up there. It has to reflect your personality first and foremost therefore bringing harmony between you and your surroundings. I have seen some very expensive paintings hung in the wrong places.
Using art as a starting point for your interior design can infuse your surroundings with your personality, this will transform your interiors and force you to work with the colour palette and the mood set by the painting.
Empty spaces to fill………. or a blank a canvas to start creating?
My French farmhouse interior could never be replicated in my new apartment by the beach in the Costa Blanca. Creating a picture, I could fall in love with helped me design the rest of the apartment. I found a theme and all at once my interior was beginning to come together, falling into place with ease and harmony.
My tip is to find a piece that speaks to you. Can you relate to it, fall in love with it, how does it make you feel? Is it a piece you would like to wake up to or greet you as you walk into your home?
Some pieces of art become like your family and undoubtedly will want to move into your new home. If it is art, you cannot live without then surely it speaks to you and you have to find a place in your new home for it.
I tend to like a back story with the art I live with, I especially like to know who painted it and even more so if it is an original piece of work. Artists pour their heart and soul into their creations. All that energy hung on your wall. Imagine what you can bring into your home if chosen correctly.
Original Art has never been so accessible. Artists are free to share their work over social media and on art platforms. Similar to writers who are able to self-publish books, there are now more ways to acquire original artwork. The artist no longer has to worry about being accepted into a gallery to achieve recognition. Unknown artists can build their own following without representation, thus giving the consumer the chance to acquire paintings at a lower cost and who knows? there is a possible chance your painting may increase in value one day. An investment risk surely worth taking and one you can simply enjoy every day when you glance at it.