Collecting Art Like A Pro

Professional interior designer, Kati Curtis, shares her top tips for collecting art like a pro—->

Often we work with clients who are avid art collectors and have extensive collections that we’re lucky enough to be able to feature in our designs. But now and then we come across clients who seek our advice on where to start. There are no rules for collecting art – as long as it speaks to you we say do it. However, there are some simple things to remember when buying, framing, hanging and enjoying your art collection.

Here are our 10 simple rules for art:

1.    The art should be the star.  Don’t let your frame compete with your art. An ornate frame can highlight an ornate piece, but could overshadow something modern.

2.    Always use a professional to mount or frame your art – don’t insult your art with anything less!

3.    Don’t buy art to match the furniture. A truly curated art collection speaks for itself.

The art need not match the furniture

4.    Photography is more than black and white. Ansel Adams’ are beautiful, but color photographs can be sophisticated, stunning, and add interest to your interior.

5.    Buy art that speaks to you personally. The amount you paid for it is irrelevant! If you love it – it’s right.

6.    You are NOT Andy Warhol. Please don’t insult his name by “Warholizing” photos of yourself, your kids or your pets. There is a time and place for everything and you don’t need to memorialize yourself just yet. Buy what YOU love!

7.    You don’t need everyone’s opinion. Don’t ask your friends or co-workers if they like or approve of your art. Art is extremely subjective, and what matters is if you’re happy with it.

8.    Hand art at eye level. Most people hang art too high. 60” on center above your finished floor is a great rule of thumb.

9.    Photography can be a great less expensive alternative. Fine photography can be a sophisticated and high-end addition to your home or office.

10. Whatever the cost make sure you preserve your pieces. Use high quality, museum grade mounting boards and non-glare, UV protective glass when framing your art.

Our team of experts at Nirmada is always available to help you procure and develop an art collection you will love for years to come.


Nirmada, author of this feature, is a Interior Design firm in New York City. Kati would love to talk to you about designing a space expressly for you.

You can also find a full list of all our global mentors [ who are top professional interior designers ] on our Mentors Page.


Subscribe to our e-mail newsletter to receive updates.

One Response to “Collecting Art Like A Pro”

  1. Faith Sheridan Says:

    Kati, what a great article. Like you I bridge both levels with my clients.

    I often tell my clients that an emotional connection to the art they select is key. My favorite of your tips is “Warholizing” which I will immediately add to my vocabulary.

    Best, Faith


  2. Linda Leyble Says:

    Lovely article and great advice. I find that I mostly create artistic finishes on walls, I have a hard time putting a nail into any of my own or my clients’ walls. But – I love art, so I have to learn that it’s OK to put up a beautiful piece of art on my walls! I have only 4 rooms in my house that have straight paint on them! I have artwork on those walls.

    Love the rooms in this post – they really speak to me. Thanks again…



Leave a Reply