Fragile! Why You Need the Experts to Transport and Install Your Art

September 13th, 2017

fragile art piece, handle with care

Installing artwork is more challenging than some collectors may think it is. It’s not like hanging a poster in your college dorm or placing a piece of luxury furniture in your living room. There are logistical, security, and aesthetic considerations to take into account. Hence, the need for professional art installers who know how to orchestrate the move, design the presentation, and carry out the job without risking damage to the pieces. Here are seven reasons you should stick with the experts when installing artwork.


#1: The Cost of Carelessness Can Exceed the Cost of Hiring Experts

When you buy a piece of art, you’re making a long-term investment. Protecting that investment should be a top priority for every collector, whether they have one modest painting or a museum full of priceless artwork. Consider how much your art is worth, not only now, but in the future, and then consider the potential cost of damage. In most cases, art installation fees are significantly less exorbitant than desecration or loss.


When you try to move and install pieces yourself, or even when you hire professional but non-specialized movers, there’s a very real possibility that your artwork could sustain accidental damage—anything from minor blemishes to severe defacement and even total destruction. The risk isn’t minimal, either. Transporting and placing delicate, precious works of art presents its own unique set of challenges. Even conventional movers don’t have the experience or the skill set to handle such a tricky operation. You may try to learn as you go, but there’s no guarantee of success.

art exhibit gallery

In short, you should never transfer a piece of artwork from one place to another without first asking yourself: are you willing to bear the costs of permanent damage? Trying to pinch a few pennies now may cost you a lot more in the end. When you consider the cultural and emotional significance of art, which transcends its monetary value, you understand why so many collectors and galleries rely on professional art installers to do the job correctly.


#2: Art Installers Have Special Protective Packing for Transportation

Even when you’re merely moving from one end of a room to the other, it’s important to take the proper safety precautions. Your typical mover (not to mention you average DIYer) doesn’t have the tools to transport art safely and securely. Paper, boxes, and packing peanuts simply won’t cut it.


Commercial art installation companies like Skyframe & Display have specific protective gear that helps them ensure the integrity of any object. Equipment includes:


  • Dedicated archival boxes
  • Non-abrasive packing materials
  • Special travel frames and collars


Not only do art installation experts have the right tools, they also know how to use them to get the best results with each and every installation. That means considering the type of artwork and the type of move.


Most pieces of art are one-of-a-kind creations that demand individualized accommodations. Small watercolors require an entirely different packing arrangement than large sculptures. Whether you’re moving an oil painting across a building or conveying a sculpture across town, it’s important that you use the right materials in the right way for the right job.

wooden skateboard art display

#3: The Experts Have Special Equipment for Installation

Transportation is only the first step. Installation is the end-goal. Just as specialized packing tools are required for moving, so, too, is special installation gear necessary for placing and displaying artwork. The pros have everything, from pedestals and hanging gear to display frames and lighting equipment, and they typically stock enough hardware to handle just about everything you can throw at them.


Skyframe & Display, for example, has the ability to hang frames using the right hardware for nearly any situation. That may include:


  • Classic Picture Framing Wire
  • D-Rings/Mirror Hangers
  • Wooden Z-Clips
  • Metal Z-Clips/French Cleat
  • Standoffs


Finally, the experts already have ceiling hanging systems and cable systems. Although they typically cost a bit more, it’s more convenient to get them from the same company that’s doing your installation than it is to purchase or rent them separately.


#4: They Have the Knowledge and Skill to Arrange Artwork Safely and Securely

Every wall is different. There are brick walls, concrete walls, tile walls, marble walls, and drywall. Each type of wall demands a different approach. The same equipment that works on a marble wall may not work on a brick wall and vice versa.


Some people want their artwork hung from the ceiling, which requires sturdy ceiling hanging systems. Others want to display their pieces in the middle of a room, as centerpieces for a gathering crowd. The type of pedestal used will depend on the size of the room, the nature of the piece, and the aesthetic concerns of the client.


At the end of the day, an art installer in NYC knows what type of arrangement is appropriate for every type of construction material and each scenario.


#5: They Know How to Handle Oversized Artwork

Large paintings or photographs may not fit through traditional doors. Professional picture hanging services like Skyframe & Display take care of the problem by disassembling the frame, un-stretching the canvas or rolling the image, and then re-assembling the frame at the display site. Finally, they’ll fit the painting, photograph, etc. back into the frame and install it at the final location.

#6: They Can Design a Beautiful Display

blurred art gallery

Hiring someone to hang pictures isn’t all about logistics. When it comes to artwork display, the appearance is just as important as the underlying hardware. Many collectors, galleries, and museums already know what they want in terms of display. Others would prefer to leave it up to the professionals—and for good reason. A lot of thought goes into picture hanging and sculpture installation.


There’s the placement, the lighting, and the layout. Art installers must know which hanging systems and pedestals create what kind of look. They must also know how each system works with different materials, both structurally and aesthetically. Whether you’re looking for home installation or art gallery installation, the experts at Skyframe & Display have plenty of experience mocking up and then setting up beautiful displays.


#7: Display and Installation Are Half the Battle


Most artists and collectors know the value of a well-designed, well-executed display. Installation accounts, in large part, for the visual appeal of artwork. An elegant arrangement can enhance the beauty of a classic painting or series of paintings; an unconventional presentation can bring out the revolutionary potential of art, and so on.


The display is, in many ways, part of the artistic experience, if not an integral part of the art itself. When it’s done right, it helps communicate the artist’s intended message. Done poorly, it can detract from that message and distract from the piece. The more professionally experienced the installers, the higher the chances that the job will be done right.


Custom Display Installation in New York City

art portrait gallery

Looking for professional picture hanging services in NYC? Skyframe & Display offers expert art hanging throughout NYC. We’ll mock up a design layout, choose the right equipment, and install your artwork however and wherever you need it. We offer elevation and mockup services, oversize installations, on-site installations, and all types of picture hanging. We also have all the tools you need to create a safe, stunning display, no matter the location.


Contact us to get a quote and talk specifics. You can also visit our blog to stay up to date on the latest art framing, display, and installation news.