back to the wire

A Creative Life, art exhibit, art gallery, art techniques

In my last blog post, titled ‘down to the wire‘, I listed 10 tips for prepping art for gallery display  – and someone asked me to post some photos of the finished backs of my artwork. So here are those requested photos:

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The finished back of my artwork “Cupcake” – see the coated wire, the d-rings put in with screws, and the clearly typed label?

To make my labels I type up a Word file with all of the data then print it out on full sheet label paper that I get from an office supply store.  I’ve heard from my various gallery owners that they appreciate the legibility.

Here is a close-up photo of the D-ring held on with a screw – and the coated wire on the D-ring.  Extra wire is left on so that the gallery or the client can adjust it if necessary.

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A close up of a D-ring and screw with the coated wire on it – and a tiny bit of the label showing on the left side of this photo.

Here’s another photo of the back of a different artwork – this one is a larger, heavier work so I put the felt “feet” on the bottom to help protect the wall. Also whenever there is a ‘makers mark’ on the back of my cradled board (in this case this board was made by Ampersand) I place my label so I won’t cover up the board makers mark.  If some art conservator someday had to do a repair on my artwork that information could be helpful.

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The finished back of my artwork “Fortunes Toad”

I’m sure you’ll note that the back of this piece also has the coated wire, the D-rings with screws and the printed label.  I strive for consistency as much as possible in both the kind of artwork I do on the front and the kind of work I do on the backs.

And did I mention that the wire is coated? Yep! Coated hanging wire is as essential in the art studio as water is in a kitchen!

 

 

 

down to the wire

A Creative Life, art exhibit, art gallery, art techniques, fine art

Soon I’m taking more new artwork to the Caplan Art Designs gallery. I’ve put the hanging wire on the backs of the latest 3 new works and as I worked I thought of various things I’ve learned, over the past umpteen years as a professional artist, about prepping artwork for display and delivery.

Here are 10 tips along with a picture of me wiring one of my new pieces:

  1. Assemble all necessary tools before beginning. Having to stop and hunt for something interrupts the Zen-cool I find is necessary to do a good hang-wire job.

2. Place the artwork face down on a soft surface large enough to hold my art and my tools.

3. Put the clearly typed label on the back of the artwork in the correct position so that I always know which end is “up”.

4. Use quality “D” rings and screws – NOT the saw-tooth hangers or any other cheap-o hanging method that will come loose over time and let the art fall to the floor unexpectedly.

5. Pre-drill the holes in the wood where the screws will go. (Measure for hole placement at least 2 times)

6. Carefully remove any drill-dust so it will not transfer to and/or mar the art surface.

7. Put a bit of Liquid Nails onto the tip of the screw just prior to screwing it into wood so that the screw will not come loose.

8. Use coated hanging wire – even if it is more expensive –  it is kinder to my hands, my gallery owners hands and ultimately my client’s hands. Leave enough slack in the wire that a hand can easily reach behind and position it over a hook.

9. Do the best to make the backs of the artwork as neat as the front. The wire and label matter because without them there will be nothing on the wall for anyone to see. Without a clear label the gallery owner won’t know what art is what – and thus won’t display it. How art looks on the wall is often all down to the wire. Literally.

10. During delivery – aka stacking art in the car in prep for driving to the gallery in a Zen-cool calm fashion – nest the artworks together face to face – i.e the face of one artwork next to the face of another artwork – with some soft padding between them like a towel or blanket, using the Russian-doll method of stacking; largest on bottom and in succeeding sizes until the smallest is on top.  (Shipping art is another topic…)

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Sue Clancy in her studio wiring her fine art in preparation for an exhibit

Details about my upcoming exhibit is here: