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.