Exhibiting, dusting, storing. What is completely normal for galleries and auction houses is often a challenge for private art lovers. After all, paintings are bought so that you can enjoy them – and not be forgotten in a dark storage room. But if it is necessary to store one or more pictures temporarily, there are a few things that you should be aware of.
Storing Oil Painting On Canvass
Of course, paintings are there to be seen. They beautify your own four walls, upgrade office space and when expertly put together, testify to the style and artistic taste of their owners. But there are always situations in which the art lover is faced with the task of removing his treasures from the wall and keeping them safe for a certain period of time – for example when moving, staying abroad for a long time, or redecorating.
Careful Planning of Art Paintings
In any case, the storage of paintings should be carefully planned and carried out with care so that you can continue to enjoy your investments in the future. Oil paintings are particularly demanding in terms of storage – while photos and prints can easily be temporarily stored in dark, but dry cellar rooms, oil paintings place significantly higher demands on their environmental parameters. If these are not observed, it can quickly lead to damage and thus to the depreciation of the respective painting.
Keep a Constant Room Temperature With A Good Air Conditioning
The most important thing when storing paintings is room temperature. In museums and galleries, the exhibits are therefore stored at a constant room temperature of 21 ° C and a constant humidity of 45%. The private art lover usually does not have the possibility of such a control, but you should still ensure that your storage room is as dry and constant as possible (temperature fluctuations between a maximum of 14 and 21 ° C). Basement rooms, for example, are usually not a preferred storage location for oil paintings as they often have a humidity level of over 50%.
While temperature is important in painting storage, it is therefore important to hire professionals to install air conditioning units in your home for the right room temperature. Air conditioning installation Sydney can do this for you.
Oil paintings like light, but not the sun.
It is also important that you do not expose your paintings to direct sunlight, as UV radiation has a negative effect on the color intensity. In an environment that is too dark, however, there is a risk that the colors will darken considerably. This applies in particular to oil paintings that have not or not yet been treated with a final varnish. An excellent alternative, not only in terms of storage but also any subsequent lighting, are LED lamps, as they do not contain any UV radiation.
Hygienic conditions is important too
In addition to the room temperature and the lighting conditions, you should pay particular attention to the hygienic conditions of the storage location – in the event of an insect infestation, not only can moth or lice eat on the canvas and frame, but in extreme cases, the insect droppings can also change the colors of your oil painting decompose. Once this happens, the only salvation is often a professional restoration of the painting. Of course, we will be happy to advise you on this in the worst-case scenario, but if your paintings are stored correctly, restoration of your paintings should not be necessary.
Well packaged is half the battle
Oil paintings (artist oil paint on canvas) should be stored with a frame if possible, as this gives them the necessary stability and also protects them from dust deposits. If paintings are stored without a frame, there is a risk that the canvas will bend in the area of the edges and the paint application will crack. The framed, upright paintings should be separated from each other by layers of foamed styrofoam and leaned against a smooth wall on a firm surface so that they stand securely and cannot tip over.
If possible, unframed paintings should not be rolled, but instead stacked flat on top of each other, separated by a layer of Styrofoam. However, if it is essential to roll the paintings (for example, for transportation), be sure to use sturdy, large-diameter cardboard or wooden rolls that provide space for adequate padding. The painting should always be rolled up with the paint side out. Since this measure can quickly lead to pressure points, paint chipping, and stretching, you should avoid rolling up your paintings as much as possible.
Oil paintings have to breathe
Unlike photos or prints, painted pictures require a minimum amount of fresh air. For this reason, you should generally refrain from using plastic packaging materials, as these not only hinder the air supply but also increase the risk of mold infestation due to the formation of condensation. A more stable variant than storage between polystyrene layers is the use of wooden or cardboard boxes that are specially made for this purpose.
If you want to prepare your storage room optimally, you should make sure that you do not use synthetic fibers, but rather moisture-retaining and untreated materials such as wool or cotton as well as unsealed parquet flooring. Any wall painting should under no circumstances contain latex paints, as these also obstruct the air supply. These measures will help you to create the best possible indoor climate for your paintings in your private sphere as well.