This week’s Rise Art guest curator is Helen Powell, the epitome of taste behind the beautiful interiors blog Design Hunter. Love pared back styles with touches of sophisticated, elegant minimalism, monotone colour palettes and light, fresh and airy spaces? Then this is the place to browse and dream. And that is precisely what is reflected in Helen’s curated collection of her favourite Rise Art pieces. This blogger has been featured in the likes of The Sunday Times, The Independent and Elle Decoration and here she tells us why she finds art to be so important in the home, and shares her expert tips on styling art with your interior design scheme.
Describe your personal interiors style
I love contemporary minimal design with warmth, soul and texture, and believe that the art and objects we choose to live with should create a home that is inviting, restful and a place of sanctuary.
Tell us about your personal art style
Some of the pieces I’ve chosen reflect my interest in architectural space and interior design. Others have an abstract quality that I find absorbing, soothing or meditative. I’m also drawn to photography that captures light and shadow in interesting ways. At home we have a couple of landscapes painted by a friend in the living room, and an architectural illustration by my husband in the dining area. For transitional spaces like the hallway and landing we’ve chosen photographic pieces - these are great for sparking conversation when people arrive or leave. And in the bedroom we have abstract pieces we can lose ourselves in last thing at night, or wake up gently to in the morning.
Tell us how you use art at home and why it’s important for you
Firstly, as decoration, to give life to key spaces in our home. Blank walls can be great, but some just feel empty. For me art is also something through which we can express our individuality and values. We are often drawn to art that captures the spirit of our lives, through both its style and attitude.
It can be about escapism too. Art reminds us of other viewpoints and provides an alternative mind space we can get lost in or sometimes be challenged by. Well chosen pieces can add an ‘otherness’ to our home, both complementing the interior and reminding us of the exterior world at the same time.
What are your top tips for buying art
· Try to work out what you like. The more pieces you look at the more you’ll find yourself repeatedly drawn to certain styles.
· If possible, get to know the artist. Having some knowledge of the artist, however basic, will enable you to understand the perspective they are coming from and will help you to read and interpret their art more clearly.
· Think before you buy. Is it you? Does it speak to you? Do you really love it?
· Ask yourself what it is you like about a piece of art. Good art engages both logic and emotion.
· Ask others what they think, especially if they will be living with it too.
· Before buying, sleep on it (not literally!). As with all important decisions in life, sometimes you’ll feel differently about it the next day. But then go with your instinct - if you love it, buy it!
Top tips for choosing art for interiors
· Consider the interior style of your home, but don’t feel constrained by it. Contemporary art can look great in traditional interiors.
· Pinterest is a great tool for creating interiors moodboards. Try pinning images of artworks you like alongside images that reflect the style, colour palette and furnishings of your home. Do they work together? If not, why not? Do the colours feel harmonious or does one colour jar with other elements in the room? Would a figurative piece or a landscape work better than an abstract piece?
· Consider its presence. What sort of mood does it evoke? Is it bold and energising or contemplative and calming? Does the mood of the piece suit the mood of the room? Each room in the home has a different purpose, so think about the art’s purpose too. Do you want it to fit in or stand out?
· Decide where it will go. Before buying a piece of art consider whether you have a suitable space for it. Measure your home as well as the art.
· Finally, once it’s in place don’t just forget about it. Find time to appreciate it, and consider moving pieces around every now and then to remind you that they are still important and not just ‘part of the furniture’.
Helen Powell's Top 5 Rise Art Picks
The Design Hunter | Monotone Minimalism
Helen's classically minimal approach to styling interiors shines through in this collection of her favourite Rise Art pieces; a seamlessly elegant selection with an artwork to suit every space.
As we know artwork is a great way to brighten up your walls and your home, transforming a space from dull and lacklustre to the epitome of envy. But sadly, though magic as they are, artworks won’t clean themselves, and maintaining your pieces properly is part and course of keeping them in the best nick possible. But it doesn’t have to be complicated. Our friends at Hassle have put together tips for keeping your artwork in tip-top condition.
For framed artwork, your standard glass cleaner should do the trick on brightening up glass surfaces. Alternatively, use damp newspaper for a streak free shine, or a soft, damp sponge is perfect for cleaning around the frame itself.
Rise Art's Framed Favourites
2 Oil on Canvas
The best way to clean your oil paintings? With a loaf of bread! Yes, you read that correctly! Using the soft part of the bread, gently wipe away any dust on the surface of your painting. When the bread gets dirty, just grab another piece and repeat! It’s amazing how well this hack works on all paintings, just be careful not to use the crusts!
Oils to Covet
For anything ceramic, clean it like you’d clean your grandmother’s wedding china...delicately! Use a low soap content solution and an old toothbrush to get into all the nooks and crannies. And be careful not to drop!
Ceramics to Celebrate
4 Works on Paper
To clean delicate fabrics or paper, a soft microfibre cloth dampened ever so slightly will do the trick. You don’t want to wipe too hard in case you damage the fabric, and use this only when absolutely necessary.
Perfect Paper Pieces
5 Photographic Works
Preserving photographs is pretty simple. Keep them away from natural sunlight and avoid storing your pictures in basements or attics, basically anywhere with a highly-fluctuating humidity. A once-over with a tiger cloth will do the trick when cleaning dusty photos. Its microfibre technology is perfect for cleaning sensitive surfaces including photographs, acrylics and plexiglass. And of course, keep your art photophraphy well protected with good framing.
6 If In Doubt...
Lastly, and most importantly, if you’re unsure of how to properly maintain or clean a piece of art, it’s best to have it looked at by a respected art dealer who can advise you on best practices. When it comes to expensive and loved artworks, it’s best not to take chances!
We all know that your Rise Art piece deserves a beautiful home, so why not book a domestic cleaner with Hassle.com today? We’ll send you one of our trusted cleaners and give your home the care it needs!
About the Author
Hassle.com is the online marketplace that connects busy people with trusted, local cleaners, to help you make the most of your free time.
The Surrealists of the 1920s rocked the traditional art world with fantastical dream-like imagery, inspired by the power of the subconscious mind and the imagination. Artists like Salvador Dali, Max Ernst, Rene Magritte and Joan Miro were inspired by Dadaism, the avant-garde movement born from the creative disdain for World War I and the ennui of middle class. The group used Dada as a jumping off point to delve further into the bizarre without the confines of tradition, creating the Surrealist movement in their exploration. Their work challenged not only preconceived guidelines in art, but also raised question on social mores, popular cultural and politics across Europe and eventually in the United States. Fusing free association, poetry, subconscious imagery and new processes, the Surrealists created their own language of art that has produced countless modern masterpieces that are highly regarded in art history today.
The eclectic days of Dali may be over, but Modern Surrealists are continuing the day dream, creating new surrealist art escapes for collectors and enthusiasts alike.
Lori Zimmer's Top 10 Surrealist Picks
Using collage techniques, Gallagher’s pieces combine the often surprising juxtaposition of the Surrealists, with modern challenges of femininity, sourcing many of her collage elements from decades of fashion magazines.
Playful and fun, this Surrealist take on a can of sardines has the fish itself peeling back its scales to reveal a tinny inside. The artist, Art Grafts, is the surrealist alter ego of fine art photographer Dominic Rouse.
Surrealists obscured familiar landscapes and scenes with out of place elements to create dream-like vistas. Here, Nati fuses the famous and picturesque Neuschwansten Castle in Southwest Bavaria, Germany with the architectural elements of a nuclear power station, creating a dystopian structure forced to adapt to an apparent environmental collapse.
Hare pushes architectural limits, fusing engineered elements to create this trippy space-age, super-structure, whose stilts evoke Dali’s elephants. The conglomeration functions as an urban lighthouse, showing pieces of street art, construction scaffolds, and city signage.
The clouds of Rene Magritte are reimagined in a warm embrace, embossed with a Swarovski crystal stud. The limited edition print was made from an original collage, sourced from vintage magazines and printed ephemera by hand.
Another artist influenced by the oeuvre of Magritte, D’Ambra’s behatted gentleman personifies the “notion of talking to a brick wall,” using that literal humor Surrealists loved.
Dali loved to draw melting imagery- from clocks to human faces. Moore’s whimsical paintings, which are available affordably in a print edition of 50, feature birds in flight, pigment dripping from their wings, intertwining the creature with the atmosphere. Dali would approve.
With the tongue-in-cheek humor of the Surrealists, Bousserez creates hilarious vignettes that play with scale- in the vein of Gulliver’s Travels. Using tiny plastic people, Bousserez’s characters play all across human bodies. The Barber is especially playful, using a tiny lawnmower to trim the 5 o’clock shadow from a man’s face.
Influences of Piet Mondrian and Giorgio Di Chirico can be felt Whiston’s powerful architectural piece. Bold primary colors make the piece a stand out, as well as its incredible size- holding its own at 2 meters high!
Only in a Surrealist mind does a scarab beetle crawl the earth with a Renaissance portrait upon its back. Pulling from Egyptology as well as the Old Masters, Gjoen creates a modern masterpiece that uses art history to add a glimmer of fantasy to the everyday.
Surrender to SurrEalism | A CurateD Collection
Surrender to surrealism and indulge in some escapism with our curated collection of unique artworks from a selection of Rise Art's most talented Modern Surrealists.
About the Author
Lori Zimmer is a writer and curator who has evolved along side the public art/graffiti community. She is the creator of popular blog Art Nerd New York, an art history guide to New York City that also provides off beat access to public art, exhibitions and artists’ studios. Since 2009, Lori has been working actively in the art world on many facets, from writing to curatorial projects to advising artists and event planning. Zimmer resides in New York City, but travels every chance she gets, visiting artists and galleries across the world.
Follow her @ArtNerdNY
We're very excited to introduce Cordelia Noe as this week's guest curator. Cordelia has spent nearly a decade working alongside artists, art collectors, art fairs, publications and exhibitions internationally. She shared with us some snippets of her life as an art and style expert, and a wish list of Rise Art picks.
With the opening of our exhibition in Hong Kong, plenty of exciting artist press and a brand new curated collection, September is off to a cracking start! Read the roundup to hear all about it.
It’s possibly one of the most underrated love affairs of all time. Throughout history, fashion and art have collided and combined with exceptional results; and this dynamic relationship has never been more prevalent than at London Fashion Week.
We’re very excited to welcome Dirk Petzold as today's guest curator. The Dresden-based designer, illustrator and founder of the renowned online magazine WE AND THE COLOR is at home in the realm of discovery and bringing new talent to light. Here Dirk shares his story and, importantly, his Rise Art wish list.
In the first of a series of Rise Art Guest Curators, we are thrilled to welcome Grant Pierrus, aka Interior Style Hunter. With a true sense of democratization Grant believes that everybody should have access to good design, and he shares with us his personal style and top tips for using art when it comes to world class interior design.
We're thrilled to announce our upcoming live art event at the V&A museum. Rise Art's very own Mat Cahill will spend the day capturing the crowd with his distinctive illustrations, giving you the chance to find yourself amongst the work and purchase one of his original works. Find out more, watch the exclusive video interview & RSVP to the event!
Swedish painter Cecilia Danell has found a home from home in Galway, in the West of Ireland, where most of the time you’ll find her hiding out in her studio listening to Swedish radio and making stunning works. We go into the studio with Cecilia to find out more about her life as an artist, her early love for Pippi Longstocking, and the things that get her through the day at work.