What Size Art to Use? A Definitive Guide to Space Planning

Create a Polished Looking Interior With Stylish Art Pieces

Badly hung art can ruin the look and feel of a room. You might have pieces that you treasure and love, but you have to be ruthless about where they fit in the scheme. You can always find a place for your desired objects, it just might not be centre stage above a sofa if it’s an A4 frame.

kia designs artwork prep

If you need to make artworks look larger, you can be creative with framing. This frame in our Baker St project sits completely independently from the painting, adding volume without being overwhelming.


The main culprits:

  • Hanging pieces too high. Art that is too high only highlights the gap underneath it and you end up focusing on a plain block of wall instead of the piece.
  • Using art which is too small. Most walls are large, featureless blocks, that can take a large painting or arrangement. Bigger is always better than smaller, it looks less mean.
  • Art doesn’t just mean paintings. Think sculptures. This could be a 3D piece hung on the wall, a maquette on the table or mantle, a mobile in the centre of the ceiling, or a suspended design from the corner of the room.
  • Always placing items at eye-level. Your eye level probably won’t be the same as most of your guests. Think about where you are most likely to view the image from. If it’s along a corridor, then yes, you do want it around eye level, as there is no where to stand back and admire the work. Fussy art is better in this sort of space. If the piece is at the end of a corridor, it might be better lower, especially if it’s above a console table, as by the time up get up close, you are turning to the side and won’t be looking at it.
  • Art above sofas generally looks good with the bottom of the frame being about 20cm from the sofa. You’ll want to balance the height of the sofa, so always go big here.
Kia designs art hanging instructions

If using a closer, make sure the frames and content work well with each other. If placing them above furniture, then generally about a 30cm gap is most visually pleasing.

kia designs art display

Don’t always whack the biggest piece in the middle. If you create balance then it will look nice anywhere in the composition.

If you are struggling, an easy trick is to take a photo of your hung art, then on your computer blank out the image and look carefully at the space it takes up. This will allow you to be subjective. Does it sit nicely in its surroundings?

Happy hanging!


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