May 22, 2019

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Art of Home Décor- Arranging your art:

Every art connoisseur faces a unique challenge- how to display the art. Having a fair idea of where to place/hang what art piece to improve its visual appeal can be tricky business.

Often times it so happens that an amazing piece of art is displayed in the wrong place, under the wrong lighting or on a wrong background and that brings down not just appeal of the artwork but also of the entire interior.

But fret not! We have got you covered with some tips and placement suggestions that will give you an understanding of interior decoration concerning art.

Where to place what

Interior designing follows certain unspoken norms when it comes to placing art such as looking for an apt background, ensuring visibility etc.

Read below for some such suggestions:

  1. Above your Sofa set-

One can never go wrong with hanging an exquisite painting over their sofa set. The reason behind this is that an art work, especially a painting should always be at eye level and the one placed above a sofa does just that and hence grabs attention.

  1. On a TV table or side stand:

This place is a perfect spot to showcase your favourite sculptures or vases as placing one here adds a pinch of spice to an otherwise boring table.

  1. Above your bed:

Another very appealing place to hang your masterpiece paintings is right above your bed.

Paintings with calming scenery or minimal colour are suggested for this purpose.

  1. Showcase stands and bookshelves:

While showcase stands are kind of obvious, bookshelves are very under-rated when it comes to placing art pieces or other decorative items.

Again, sculptures go best here while flower vases, pen stands, paper weights, etc. also do a good job.

  1. On your study table:

Why not showcase your art collection on your study table as well? Try to go minimalist here and place an artistic pen stand or an antique paper weight and that will suffice.

  1. Gardens:

If you own some life size sculptures, what better place to display them than in your beautiful, lavish gardens? Gardens tables can also be a great place to display art.

Choose something that is carved out of natural elements like stone or wood.

  1. Office room:

Gone are the days when an office setup is supposed to look very basic and plain.

A beautiful art piece or two usually cheer up the environment. Take a look below.

What to do and what not to?

  1. Choose a well-lit area to display your art. Insufficient lighting can bring down the appeal of it.
  2. Never hang your paintings too high or too low. Maintain an approximate eye level.
  3. Always remember- Less is more. Do not over crowd any area with a lot of art pieces.
  4. Try playing with colour contrasts. For example, a bright wall always compliments a monochromatic painting while a nude coloured interior could be spiced up with a pop of colour using colourful art works.
  5. Clean your art collection often to avoid dust accumulation on them.

 

We hope this article helped you. What are you waiting for? It is your turn to decorate your interiors.

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April 23, 2019

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Legacy of Western India- Pattachitra Paintings

Originating from the Indian western states of Odisha and West Bengal, Pattachitra is an art form that essentially makes use of “Patta” or a piece of cloth for canvas. It is one of the iconic art forms of India and holds a special place in the arts and crafts industry.

The Origins-

This age-old tradition is believed to have originated in the 5th century with themes primarily depicting Lord Jagannath and scenes from his life.

Some of the finest traces of the Pattachitra painting from the past can be found in Raghurajpur, a village in the district of Puri that is famous for its heritage crafts.

Artists working on this medium were called Chitrakaras and they often were commissioned to make art for palaces and kings. They used to work with natural pigments and followed set guidelines that gave Pattachitra paintings their unmistakeable identity.

The Present Times

Although artisans still make use of a piece of cloth and natural pigments to make Pattachitra paintings, the art form has evolved to meet modern sensibilities and resource availability.

For instance, art back then was made for religious and worship purposes while now it is majorly made to be displayed in homes, offices, restaurants and such for interior appeal. Artisans now use brushes made of different animals’ hair for different purposes. For example, brushes made of buffalo hair are used for thicker lines while those made of squirrel hair are used for finer detailing. The themes have also been diversified from depicting mythological stories to more wider subjects such as geometrical shapes, flora, fauna and more. 

However, the guidelines we mentioned earlier are still majorly followed such as using bright hues, outlining details with black and making thick, decorative borders.

With such legacy, the traditional technique of making a Pattachitra painting is worth knowing.

The Process-

It can broadly be divided into a threefold process which involves:

  1. Preparing the Canvas:

A cotton cloth that is free of starch is often used for these paintings. It is first dipped in a solution of crushed Imli seeds and water for about 3-4 days after which it is sun dried.

Both sides of the cloth are then coated with a paste consisting of Imli, gum, and chalk powder and the cloth is again left to dry.

After that, the cloth is smoothened by rubbing a khaddar stone and a Chikana stone is used for giving the cloth a shiny effect.

  1. Preparing the Colours:

As discussed, Pattachitra painters make use of natural pigments which are obtained from vegetables, minerals, leaves, etc. For example, black is obtained by placing a burning lamp in a tin can and collecting the soot that forms while red is obtained from the stone hingual. Similarly, yellow comes from Haritali stone, white from Conch shells and green from boiling leaves.

All these pigments are mixed with water and gum to give them a uniform consistency.

More hues are created by mixing these primary colours together and coconut shells are often used for holding colours.

  1. Painting:

A Pattachitra painting is often started with sketching borders. A base sketch is then made based on the subject chosen. Once the sketch is ready, desired colours are filled in after which the entire figure and each detail is given an outline using black colour.

A coat of varnish maybe applied to prevent the painting from wearing off.

Although Pattachitra paintings were side tracked for few years, they are now being patronized and various centres are being set up across the state to teach and promote this art form. More and more women are being encouraged to make art to build themselves an identity and livelihood.

April 02, 2019

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Art Across The Length And Breadth of India:

From time immemorial, spanning across the lands of India is its extremely beautiful and exquisite art and architecture.

Be it the paintings found in the caves of Bimbetka or the carvings excavated from places surrounding the Indus Valley Civilization, be it the art from Mauryan dynasty or the architecture from the period of Mughals, each art form speaks its own style of design and carries strong characteristics that narrate the story of its origin.

Indian art forms vary from paintings, sculptures, textiles, and pottery to elaborate architecture and interiors. Being a land of many cultures and religions, the art of India differs not just in style but also based on the various states and regions that the country has.

Take a look at some of the finest examples of art across India.

From Kerala-

Situated on the Malabar Coast of India, Kerala offers a range of exquisite art pieces owing to its skilled craftsmen. Kerala is famous for its metal lamps and vessels but most importantly for its mural paintings.

 

Kerala Murals are painted in bright hues and often make use of natural pigments. They portray scenes from Indian mythology and have characteristic rounded patterns that make them distinct from other paintings. Read more about these paintings here.

From Odisha-

Of all the things that the eastern land of Odisha is famous for, its Pattachitra paintings hold a very prominent place. They are essentially paintings done on a piece of cloth. Generations of artisans found their bread and butter in this art form and hence, its legacy continues to spread across the globe to date.

Pipli, another region in Odisha houses artisans who are famous for their use of vibrant colors and intricate embroidery on pieces of cloth.

 

Did you know that we, team Artisanscrest have been awarded the Shilpi Sahajogi Sanman by a non-profit organization in Odisha for our service in promoting Indian art? Read about it here.

From West Bengal-

This state is renowned for its rich culture and immense contribution to art and heritage. We at Artisanscrest host some absolutely gorgeous pieces of art from West Bengal. 

Called the Dhokra brass works, they are named after the Dhokra Damar tribes of this state. They make use of an age-old technique called the ‘lost-wax’ method to craft sculptures that have very strong motifs and forceful forms.

Find more of these here.

From Karnataka-

Situated 60kms off Bangalore, this rural village of Karnataka called Channapatna has marked its prominence on the map through its artisans’ undoubted expertise in carving and crafting wood. This art form is said to have originated during the rule of Tipu Sultan about two centuries ago.

We take pride in the fact that the Hampi Chariot, a World Heritage Site in Karnataka has been recreated by us in all its grandeur, about which you can find more here.

 

What makes India and its art beautiful is how all these differences come together to be called the heritage of India and we, at Artisanscrest celebrate this beauty with all our heart and soul. You will find more such marvelous pieces of art on our website https://www.artisanscrest.in. Do make a visit. 

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March 16, 2019

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Heritage of Handlooms- The Textile Industr

The handloom industry in India is one of the largest cottage industries of the country. Its significance lies in the multitude of employment opportunities that it provides and its contribution to the country’s economy.

Starting from hand weaving to using extensive machinery and advanced procedures, this industry is constantly changing and updating itself to suit the market requirements both quality, quantity, and variety wise. So much so that textile designing is now a field of study in itself.

History of Weaving:

Indian weaving dates back to the earliest settlements. Pictorial representations of the gods and goddess in ancient Hindu temples depict them adorned in free-flowing fabrics indicating that such garments were the norm back when these temples were built. Excavations from the Indus Valley Civilization also revealed some exquisite pieces of Indian cloth with beautiful and intricate patterns on them.

Regional Significance:

Being a land of diverse cultures, religions, and traditions India is home to a variety of different weaving techniques from different regions.

For example, the desert lands of Rajasthan and Gujarat are famous for their vibrant tie and dye prints while the southern states are renowned for their beautiful work on sarees such as the Kanchipattu sarees and Gadwal cotton sarees. On the other hand, the northern state of Kashmir is famous for its Pashmina shawls.

With such prominence, it is only obvious that the textile industry in India is widespread and booming.

Handloom Collection at Artisanscrest:

We, housing some of the best artworks from across the length and breadth of the country could not afford to miss out on showcasing out versatile handloom industry. On our website, you will find some exquisite works of pure art that stand testimony to the skills of the weavers.

These shawls are all made of Tussar silk combined with cotton to give them a warm yet very elegant appeal.

If you are an art or fashion connoisseur, you ought to own at least one of these beautiful textiles.

They go well with the bold tribal jewelry and together make a statement.

Go ahead and order yours today!

February 28, 2019

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Mudras of Lord Buddha and their significance:

In 624 BC, Siddharta Gautama was born into a royal family in today’s Nepal. He was smart and intelligent despite which his parents decided to keep him away from worldly sufferings and ordained him to a life of boundless luxuries and happiness and got him married at the age of 16.

But destiny had different plans for him.

When he was 29, he stepped out of the palace walls and was immediately hit by the harsh realities of life and the sufferings of the common man. Disturbed and shaken with this discovery, he decided to renounce his royal life and left behind his kingdom and wife to live the rest of his life seeking answers to existential questions.

Despite several teachings and interactions, he was not satisfied and it was then, after 6 years of renouncement that he sat under a Bodhi tree near the Neeranjana river to practice penance. In this state of calmness, he received the answers he was looking for and realized that life is a continuous cycle of ups and downs and that one who is born is bound to die and one who dies takes birth again.

After his enlightenment, he set out to spread his wisdom far and wide. He opted several methods to preach of which Mudras played a very prominent role. Mudras are essentially hand gestures that convey a message or indicate a purpose. To date, these Mudras are used by Yogis and Buddhist monks in their meditation practices.

Some often-used Mudras of Lord Buddha are listed below. Take a look-

  1. Dharmachakra Mudra:

Also called the “Teaching of Wheel of Dharma”, the Dharmachakra Mudra is practiced by joining the thumb and forefingers of each hand to form a circle. The right palm is turned outward while the left palm, touching the right palm is turned inward.

Lord Buddha performed this Mudra in his first sermon after enlightenment at Sarnath, India.

  1. Dhyani Mudra:

This Mudra is often used by yogis to improve concentration and stability. It is performed by placing the right palm on top of the left one with the thumbs touching each other to form a triangle. This triangle represents the three jewels of Buddhism, namely: The Buddha, the Sangha, and the Dharma.

  1. Abhaya Mudra:

This Mudra is a symbolic representation of fearlessness and is said to evoke feelings of peace and protection. It is performed by raising the right hand to the shoulder length, bending the arm and holding the palm upright and facing outwards.

It is said that once an angry elephant was charging towards Lord Buddha when he performed the Abhaya Mudra and the beast calmed down at once and bowed before him.

  1. Bhumisparshi Mudra:

Lord Buddha performed this Mudra right after his enlightenment as a gesture to request mother Earth to stand witness to his awakening. It is performed by turning the right palm downwards and touching the ground with fingers.

  1. Vitarka Mudra:

This Mudra is used to symbolize the transmission of the teachings of Lord Buddha and is performed by joining the tips of the thumb and index finger of the right hand while other fingers are kept straight.

Lord Buddha’s life was exemplary and he is worshipped as the deity of Buddhism. His teachings, to this date, spread light on enlightenment and cleanse the world of impurity.

Bring in an idol, statue, or painting of Lord Buddha today to bring in tranquillity and serenity into your home or workplace. Visit our website to find some intricate and exquisite sculptures of the Lord that you can customization according to your needs, tastes and wants.

February 23, 2019

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Symbolism in Sculpture: The Many Poses Of Lord Ganesha

Lord Ganesha is a very important and much-revered deity in the Hindu religion and culture. You can bet you will find at least one murti, painting or any other representation of the Lord in every Hindu household for he is worshipped as the bestower of boons and remover of obstacles. It is for this reason that a brief Ganapati-puja is done before commencing any function, gathering or even when cracking a business deal.

With interesting anecdotes to instances from mythological scriptures, his life story is often narrated on many occasions and it is only obvious the Lord is depicted in various forms too. But did you know that each such depiction has a spiritual significance and choosing the right idol or murti for your home or workplace can make all the difference and bring in all the miracles you need in your life?

Different postures here have different interpretations and depict a different emotion. Take a look at some of them.

  1. Sitting Posture:

This posture of Lord Ganesha is often depicted in his idols and sculptures. He is either seated on a lotus or on a grand throne and his posture is called Lalita Aasana where he sits with one leg folded while the other rests on the ground. The Lord’s foot resting on the ground is said to symbolize his interest in the worldly affairs of is devotees.

Representation: Harmony, safekeeping

 

In some of the depictions as below, Lord Ganesha is shown folding both his legs. This symbolizes that the Lord is in deep meditation.

Representation: Peace, tranquility

An idol where the Lord is seated is recommended for being placed in your house or at your workplace to represent that he stays in that location for long.

 

  1. Standing Posture:

Famously known as the Abhanga, an idol where the Lord is standing can often be found in pandals during the festival of  Ganesh Chaturthi.

Abhanga means “not bent” and as the name suggests, this posture symbolizes rigidity and the correct attitude.

Representation: Activity, focus on action

 

  1. Dancing Posture:

A very vibrant and joyous depiction of the Lord is him dancing to melodious tunes in bliss and cheer. Tales suggest that Lord Ganesha used to dance to entertain his parents.

In this depiction, the Lord is shown with his left leg raised while the right leg is firmly placed on the ground showing grace and poise.

Representation: The beginner of arts, happiness

  1. Reclining Posture:

In this posture, the Lord is shown in a luxurious state where he is leaning on a comfortable throne with a pillow. This symbolizes royalty and divinity and often brings in wealth and prosperity.

Representation: Stability, prosperity

 

The direction of the trunk of Lord Ganesha-

Apart from various postures of the Lord, the direction of his trunk also has great importance and is said to play a significant role in the happiness and prosperity of your house.

  1. Trunk turned left:

Lord Ganesha’s trunk, when turned left is said to represent Ida Nadi which invokes the energy of the moon which is calm, peaceful, relaxing and cool.

It is for this reason that an idol with the trunk turned left is suggested for household placements for this brings in serenity and happiness.

 

  1. Trunk turned right:

Often called the Siddhi Vinayaka, an idol of Lord Ganesha with his trunk turned right is said to be of great spiritual value as this invokes the energy of the sun.

Many believe that this idol needs to be worshipped with great care and by properly following each and every ritual or one is destined to face the wrath of God.

When worshipped properly, this idol is said to fulfill boons faster.

Such idols are often placed in temples for this purpose.

 

  1. The trunk facing straight:

Such idols are very rare and symbolize that the Sushumna Nadi or the central axis of a human body is open. Such a depiction represents alignment with oneself. It is mostly used for meditation.

 

You now have all the knowledge you need to purchase an idol of Lord Ganesha that well suits your needs. Visit our website today to find some exquisite models of the Lord crafted to perfection.

February 04, 2019

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‘Shilpi Sahajogi Sanman’ presented to Artisanscrest for outstanding work in promoting Indian art

Odisha Shilpi Mahasangha is a Government recognized non-profit organization that works to improve the living conditions of the artisans and craftsmen of Odisha and make their lives better. It was started six years ago and has been publishing a magazine ever since to bring awareness to the cause and to bring the local artisans to light.

We, team Artisanscrest, take pride in the fact that we have been supporting the magazine and co-sponsoring Artisans’ events thereby supporting the organization. This enabled them to reach far and wide in the state and encouraged more artisans and craftsmen to join this movement. Today, they are a proud family of ten thousand artisans.

A couple of months ago, in their 6th annual celebration, we were awarded the Shilpi Sahajogi Sanman for the year 2018. This award was presented to us by the Hon’ble Arts and Culture Minister of Odisha, Shri Prasanta Nanda, who was also the chief guest at the event which saw a gathering of more than five thousand artisans.

Our efforts in creating a consistent livelihood for artisans:

Artisanscrest is an e-commerce platform whose main motto is to preserve and celebrate traditional art. We get involved in the process of creation and involve ourselves from the workshop level itself, thus helping to preserve tradition and also give maximum representation to the artists.

India is a land of diverse cultures, religions, and traditions. With such rich cultural heritage, it is only natural that each region and each tribe have to themselves an art form that is representative of their culture.

We travel across the length and breadth of India to bring together some fine artisans, sculptors, artists, and craftsmen who excel in their traditional art form that is native to their place. We then strive to improve their livelihood by continuously hiring and extending work to the artisan community and getting them to work under the well-established banner of “Artisanscrest”.

We then bring their work to light by hosting their masterpieces on our website thereby promoting these ancient art forms across the globe and generating a greater demand. We also provide them with a large commission on their work to ensure a stable livelihood for them.

Be it the exquisite woodwork of the Channapatna region of or the lost wax brass work done by the Dhokra Damar tribes, our website is home to them all. We also extend customization options, so our customers get to specify their requirements and receive a masterpiece crafted exclusively to suit their needs.

Make sure to give it a visit and don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter.
January 19, 2019

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Rooted Deep Into the Woods- Tribal Art

Rooted Deep Into the Woods- Tribal Art

We talk of people who knew not canvases, boards, colors, and brushes. They come from the deepest of woods and bring with them a culture so rich and art so strikingly beautiful that connoisseurs over the globe have adored it for ages.

Tribal art can be distinguished by its bold yet simple imagery and use of vibrant colors. Another very distinct feature of this art form is the use of all natural materials. Be it for painting, carving or sculpting, these artisans resort to mother nature for their supplies.

This exquisite art form dates back to the primitive era of mankind and has evolved since then into a more refined skill that can be commercially viable.

What is Tribal Art?

It is essentially an art form that is native to the tribal regions. In India, various tribes from several regions have marked their identification through their art and craft which now stands as part of the country’s rich cultural heritage.

This form of art, as mentioned above, makes use of naturally available resources such as stones, leaves, wood, gems, shells, etc. Improved technology and easy accessibility have now enabled them to make use of metal and other processed material as well.

One thing that remains true to origins to date is that Tribal Art is still majorly handmade. They beat, carve and sculpt by hand in order to give the raw material a definite form and shape.

Making a livelihood-

The last two decades saw tribal art and craft being celebrated as bold artifacts. Statement junk jewelry became the latest market trend. This brought to light the much forgotten tribal art that now enjoys the adoration of art lovers across the globe.

The skill that has been passed on to tribal artisans from hundreds of generations has now started giving them a means of earning.

One issue they still face is a lack of exposure and means of transportation. Much like handlooms which are now being favored after a dull period, it is time we recognize Tribal Art as a form that is worth appreciating, cherishing and passing on to future generations. Else, it is only a matter of time before we lose this precious tradition.

Our team at Artisanscrest acts to bridge this gap between tribal artisans and art connoisseurs and host exquisite samples of this fine art. Take a look below-

A Dhokra Brasswork peacock.

A flower vase made of Bamboo.

Fine jewelry from the Tribal Jewelry collection.

An Arecanut wall hanging of Lord Ganesha.

 

We do our part by promoting tribal artisans. It is now your turn to encourage them and sustain their art form. Go ahead and order now!

December 30, 2018

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Build Your Traditional Indian Art Collection- Tips, Pointers and Products To Get You Started

In our previous blog, we spoke about building an art collection along with some tips to collect and organize. In this one, we are going more specific and focusing on Indian art and how to build your very own collection of it.

India is a land of diverse cultures, religions, tribe, and folks. Each region of the country brings with it its own share of traditional heritage that is most reflected in its art forms. With such rich diversity, it is only fair that you, as an art collector, bring together exquisite pieces of art famous to each region they come from.

Given below are some examples of fine artwork done by artisans whose skill has been passed on to them from generations that lived long before them.

Kerala Lamps:

It is a common sight in Indian temples to find long, beautiful, pillar-like metal structures lit using wick and oil. Such a structure is called a Deepasthambam. The state of Kerala specializes in making these using bell metal. A couple of layers and multiple designs including carefully crafted motifs make these lamps a stylized yet traditional piece of work that can be placed either in the puja room or decorated elsewhere on a table.

Pattachitra Paintings:

No art collection is ever complete without a painting or two hanging proudly on the walls. The most traditional form of Indian paintings include the Pattachitra paintings. This technique dates back to almost 5th century B.C and uses cloth as the medium for painting. Pigments are usually natural and work is hand-done.

Find out more about Indian paintings here.

Channapatna Woodworks:

Situated 60kms off the city of Bangalore in Karnataka is a rural village that is famous worldwide for its simple yet enchanting works using wood. They specialize in making toys out of wood and this art form dates back to the era of Tipu Sultan’s rule about two centuries ago. Although the techniques have been more mechanized and modified, the essence of the art form remains to be traditional.

You can find detailed information on this art form here.

Tribal Jewellery:

Tribes of India are an essential and irreplaceable part of India heritage, culture, and tradition. They have their own share of contribution to Indian art. Their motifs are usually very sharp and forceful owing to their origins in dense forests.

Tribal jewelry pieces are a must-have in every art connoisseur’s collections.

 

We at Artisanscrest specialize in manufacturing and supplying traditional art forms from across India. Visit our website to find some beautiful works of art that will add value to your collection.

December 18, 2018

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Make a Statement- Tips to Build and Organize Your Art Collection:

For quite some time now we have been writing about different types of art, various media, methods, their significance and more for you to have an even idea on Indian art and craft.

If you are reading this, it is possible that you are planning on building an art collection of your own. If you are not, this article might inspire you to do just that.

Continue reading to find some great tips and suggestions to build your very own art collection.

  1. Find art that makes you happy

Art is varied and comes in different styles, sizes and options to choose from. Before you make a purchase, analyze if you are ready to make a commitment for a long time to come. You don’t want to be bored of it!

  1. Explore different styles of art

You could like paintings, sculptures, craftwork and more. Each such art form then has various styles to offer. Take, for example, paintings. Paintings can be abstract, contemporary, impressionistic, traditional, Indian, etc.

Take your time to explore various art forms. One way to do that could be following Instagram handles and hashtags.

Once you find a form that suits your tastes, start collecting.

We offer a variety of styles to choose from:

  1. Print copies could be inexpensive compared to originals

Artists often provide digital copies or printed versions of the original masterpiece. They are not only cheaper compared to the original paintings but also come in various sizes and dimensions for you to choose from. Replicas are usually as good as the original and yet offer a better price. Take a look at our customization solutions to find some such artifacts.

  1. Keep an eye out on artists on social media

Artists majorly marketing on social media handles such as Instagram and Facebook sometimes announce giveaways for promotional purposes. This could be a great opportunity for you to collect art especially if you are a new player in the field.

  1. Consider your space

What use is purchasing art if not to be displayed? Displaying aesthetically makes the piece stand out and for that, one needs to have a good idea of the spacing. Cramming a lot of pieces in one room or hardly having any statement pieces at all, both don’t give off a good appeal.

Therefore, carefully evaluate your spaces before making a purchase.

  1. Frame it right

A crucial point most collectors often miss out is the frame. A right frame for a right piece of art goes a long way in making that particular piece stand out. Play around with frames until you find the one that feels and fits just right.

  1. Surroundings matter

Of course where you place your art matters but so do the surroundings. A heavily crammed room may not be the right place for a painting of Lord Buddha. Similarly, a large painting stands perfectly well behind a sofa set in your living room.

Plan your placement well.           

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