Metallic branch sculptures are laid out over a platform bed for a monochromatic and textural effect. Image: Our Style Stories
15 | Designer: Azam MohamedThis living room switches up the common aesthetic of paneled walls and smooth artwork in favor of paneled artwork and smooth walls.
Paintings and illustrations are just one of the many ways in which you can decorate a wall. Do check out our feature on wooden wall art decor for more ways to personalize your walls.
8 | Visualizer: Sequoia design studioIn this interior, classic materials and furniture play against a dramatic industrial background enhanced by modern pop art.
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Shop a similar look: Art | Throw Pillow | Candle Holder | Star Sculptures | Floor Lamp
16 | Visualizer: Anton KostetskiyDecorating an atrium or other tall room is rather difficult. While procuring a large vertical painting might prove difficult, the result is well worth the search.
Displaying artwork isn’t your only option for livening up a blank white wall. This stunning home in India showcases a large branch for a natural, earthy aesthetic in the sitting room. The traditional daybed is from Rajasthan, and the ebonized-teak side table is by Mathieu for Stephanie Odegard.
14 | Via: WallozaAlthough this living room has a solidly-defined color theme, the bright rainbow sofa pillows completely change the overall look.
Always leave at least 2 inches between your wall decor, or more if you have lots of wall area to fill. Image: Studio Kardum
31 | Visualizer: Javier WainsteinWhere a television would normally stake out its territory, a dramatic black and gray painting makes its mark instead. Its weighty tone draws the eye immediately.
In a serene Martha’s Vineyard vacation house, a ladder from Lostine propped up against a wall and paired with artwork bring instantly breezy personality to an otherwise drab wall. The dining table is a family heirloom, the chairs are by Arne Jacobsen and the stool is from 1stdibs.
For a rustic feel, take a cue from this historic Long Island farmhouse and hang up a few antique pieces that you adore, whether they match or not. These 19th-century mirrors were found in Antwerp and give the entryway an eclectic feel.
Last thing, choose art that is vibrant or graphic or powerful. Otherwise, what’s the point?
32 | Visualizer: Svyatyuk StanislavAnd a look at our last interior – this warm hued painting pops out among the cooler greenish-gray tones that make up this modernistic living room.
Hang artwork in your dining room that ties in the nearby furniture pieces, like this dining room featuring both orange wall art and black and white photography. Image: Diego Alejandro Design
Is your space all set up with the perfect furniture, but still feels kind of vanilla? Do you live in a modern tract home with big, impossible walls to fill? Are you having trouble deciding what size or type of wall decor to choose or how to hang pictures? These wall decor ideas and tips are going to help you conquer those problems.
5 | Visualizer: Innovattio ArchitekturaPhotographic prints lend themselves well to this eclectic living room interior. A monochromatic art collection is less complicated to work with, easily adaptable to any style.
The unique floor lamp you see here is Solveig by designer Avril de Pastre.
A good rule of thumb is to choose wall art that takes up the width of the wall, minus 6-12 inches on each side, so it looks like it’s centered, like the image above. For example, you have a 36 inch wall. Leave about 6 inches on each side of the piece of art, which means you should choose something around 24 inches wide.
In the living room of a PR maven’s maximalist New York City apartment, a blank space is brought to life with an extensive gallery wall. Divide your stark wall into sections, including a small collage of art and mirrors and an array of larger paintings. The portraits shown here are by Kimberly Brooks.
This jewel-toned London townhouse turned blank walls into a cohesive gallery of artwork with numerous frames of the same size. The walls are painted in Farrow & Ball’s Borrowed Light and Elephant’s Breath, and the bronze lantern and marble floor are both original to the house.
A bamboo wall sculpture breaks up all the tailored lines in this master bedroom. Image: EDS Interiors
A neutral room gets a striking piece of wall art that mirrors the soft colors but adds shades of complementary blue. Image: Christopher Magidson
There are also large format canvases or removable wallpaper murals you can use to create a big, dramatic focal point.
27 Colorful Wallpaper Design Ideas That Bring Personality To Any Space
Designer Kimille Taylor’s Upper West Side dining room makes white walls look chic with a gorgeous painting by Allen Anthony Hansen, framed perfectly by silver sculptural sconces.
Wall decor comes in all shapes and sizes. There’s traditional framed art, lightweight and unframed canvases, object collages, metal wall sculptures and more. Check out these great examples of wall decor ideas for inspiration:
Instead of hanging a very large work of art, hang several images symmetrically for a clean, crisp look. Image: City Desk Studio
Use a blank wall to showcase your collectibles, as in this morning room’s floral china collection by Royal Worcester in a historic English estate. The Jacobean-style dining chairs retain their original leather upholstery and the custom Crossley carpet was made in Halifax.
Small wall art boxes or mini square canvases are a great and flexible option for filling a big or oddly shaped wall. Image: Sean Gallagher
A wall hanging brings relaxed, seaside charm to this guest bedroom in a Portuguese home. The beds are topped with crocheted-cotton coverlets from Bulgaria and the tile floor is original to the house.
3 | Visualizer: Julia BorisenkoHere a mixed-media canvas plays into the structural interior features, like the transition between darker and lighter wood between the living room and kitchen. Gray highlights draw attention to the textured wall and deconstructed forms contrast against the straight lines of the furniture.
18 | Visualizer: Pivot StudioStriking but not overwhelming; this choice complements the aesthetic of the resident’s book collection but stands alone as a fine piece to appreciate.
6 | Designer: Nikita RyazhkoA sketch of Steve Jobs joins a stunning abstract ink print, both with organic influences to balance out the strict geometric theme used throughout this living room.
19 | Visualizer: Studio DEnewIn this living room, the artwork makes the first impression without a doubt. Colorful furniture complements the print without completely emulating its style or color palette.
The unique coffee table made of wooden blocks seals the look.
4 | Visualizer: Adrian IancuThis home doesn’t base its interior around the artwork, but instead remains relatively neutral – a sort of blank canvas that accommodates any style the residents want to achieve.
The single yellow pillow ties back into the overall theme.
11 | Via: Gutarev VladA great example of a print that matches both the aesthetic and the attitude of a room – it’s youthful, fun, and playfully aware. Nobody can frown near a pop art likeness of SpongeBob, right?
A successful wall featuring fun, vibrant art is hung at the right height and just smaller than the sofa table for the perfect scale. Image: IBB Designs
27 | Visualizer: Ricardo FerreiraSuch an interesting living room! The interior-themed artwork adds a layer of meta awareness that makes its presence quite novel.
Take A Behind-The-Scenes Look At Wallpaper Being Made In The 1960s
Mix-and-match your favorite pieces of art, regardless of style or era, and display them using similarly gilded frames. In the master bedroom of a Los Angeles home, for example, the owners hung a wall of artworks from the couple’s collection above a decidedly feminine Italian giltwood settee.
29 | Visualizer: AX2 StudioAlthough the painting centered above the sofa could certainly stand alone, its visual impact is enhanced by the natural wood tones and light brown accents used throughout the living room.
Hang an array of antique plates on a blank wall for an unexpected collection for guests to admire. In a corner of a kitchen in a Connecticut country house, the walls are hung with Dutch plates purchased in Sri Lanka and turbans that the designer had made in India as gifts for friends.
Hang wall decor 6-8 inches above your furniture. Image: Taylor Smyth
A contemporary living room gets organically shaped wood rings in a free flowing pattern to warm up and soften the room. Image: Marc Michaels Interior Design
24 | Visualizer: KoneksignAt the end of a long open floor plan, a colorful pink and blue painting gives the eye a place to rest and focus.
28 | Visualizer: Bray ArtistPortraits with fluid organic lines compliment the curved shapes found in the table, rug, and potted tree. Sharp geometric forms stand in contrast.
Install simple, minimalist shelving and display a few of your favorite books and objects to maintain a modern look. This Central Park apartment made use of an empty wall in the dining area by adding shelves that perfectly match the white walls.
23 | Visualizer: Azovskiy & Pahomova ArchitectsBold and beautiful! The furniture continues the spectrum of color used in the floral wall art, rather than acting as a direct continuation. Thematically, the curvaceous furniture pairs well with the blossoms that thrive on the central volume.
In the bedroom of a Paris pied-à-terre, animal drawings cover the blank wall and include works by Paul Jouve, Georges Lucien Guyot and André Margat. The bed is a custom design, the rug is an antique Persian and the chandelier is by Baguès. The walls are painted in Farrow & Ball’s Wevet.
What happens when artwork takes center stage in a home? Rather than adding art as an afterthought, even a single favored piece can easily serve as a perfect anchor for the rest of the room. The following images explore a variety of ways to make home artwork serve as more than just a focal point, but as a unifying feature within an interior design. The techniques employed here are clever and diverse: some of these interior artwork ideas perfectly complement the color palette, others unify the design theme, and some enhance the character of the structure itself.
Four perfectly hung art pieces add vibrant color to this modern dining room. Image: Marc Michaels Interior Design
21 | Visualizer: Ricardo FerreiraPlayful pop art prints featuring Michael Jackson offer a charming response to this rustic-meets-industrial living room theme. The metallic chrome swing arm wall lamp adds a hint of luxury to the space as well.
7 | Visualizer: ARTSTUDIO Design Light and shadow provide the overarching theme in this apartment living room – and the stunning artwork in the background enhances the effect. Even if the image weren’t perfectly coordinated in terms of color, the theme itself would still help to carry the interior.
17 | Via: ApplicoAn unforgettable interior style – this living room pairs a full wall mural with a floor so polished it reflects its surroundings like glassy water on a calm day. This is a thematically comprehensive interior for those dedicated to art but who have a separate space to display individual pieces.
25 | Visualizer: Pavel PetrovPrimary colors aren’t the easiest theme for a designer to adopt. This painting defines the overall theme while the bright furniture accentuates the yellow accents.
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Create artwork on your walls without hanging a single frame. This London townhouse’s library has plaster paneling in a custom design. The painted table is from the 1940s, the bench is by André Arbus and the vase is by Marianna Kennedy. The abaca rug is by Stark.
In a San Francisco home with art gallery sensibilities, a moon-shaped sculpture by Manuel Neri brings pops of color to a blank, white wall. The kitchen’s cabinetry is by Henrybuilt, the countertops are PentalQuartz, the faucet is by Dornbracht and the stools are by Overgaard & Dyrman.
Inside a sophisticated New York apartment, a blank wall is given a museum-like quality with a bookshelf filled with reading material and collected treasures. Custom steel-and-oak stairs lead to the mini library.
What if you’re hanging living room wall art over furniture like a sofa or sofa table? Hang the artwork so the bottom edge is 6-8 inches from where the table or sofa back ends.
12 | Via: ProjetUAllGorgeous! Here, the light tones on the abstract prints stand out against their neutral backdrop. Rich furniture textures seem to complement the artwork rather than the other way around.
Once you have an idea of a general spot, frame out the area with painter’s tape to visualize the spot. Stand back a few feet and see if you like where it sits on the wall. Get artsy with this; maybe you want to hang your wall art slightly off center because there’s a plant in the corner or a chair that will block some of it. Create a vignette, or setting, like the image above, where the art is part of the grouping and slightly off center.
The selection of prints were thoughtfully chosen to work with the room’s color, while adding an additional green color for depth. Image: Orbit Homes
Six wood panels mounted on a black wall add dimension to the series. Image: Artistic Environments
Pick wall decor that’s the same length or smaller than the furniture piece it sits over. Image: 2LG Studio
Hang wall art in a diptych or triptych pattern, which is basically two, three or more panels of art that flow. Be sure to leave at least 2 inches between the pieces. You can do bigger spacing if you have a huge wall, just keep it consistent.
One wall in this lively São Paulo duplex is covered with mirrors that reflect the room’s vibrant pieces. The artwork on the mirrors is by John Grant, the 1940s sofa is upholstered in a Rubelli velvet and the Louis XV-style armchairs are antique.
1 | Visualizer: Aurélien BRIONColor matching often proves to be the most straightforward way to incorporate artwork into the home. This space benefits from neutral basics, with the colorful accents easy to change out in case the artwork changes.
The homeowners hung a triptych made of small, dimensional objects to add some visual interest and texture to their beige walls. Image: Sean Michael Design
What if you are hanging wall art over a sofa, bed or table? Choose a piece of art (or a series) that is the same length as the furniture piece or smaller. Avoid wall decor that is wider than the furniture piece; it looks totally weird.
A painting of a 1970s plane split into three canvases makes a dramatic statement in retail guru Jeffrey Kalinsky’s minimalist New York Apartment. The painting is from Wyeth and the walls are sheathed in Venetian plaster.
A big, windowless wall can be the perfect canvas for creative decor ideas. Don’t let that blank space go to waste! Take a look at these genius wall decor ideas that will liven up any space.
First of all, take a look at the wall you’re going to fill to decide what size art you should pick. There are many ways to determine this and you’ll see different ideas throughout this post.
There are many ways you can hang wall art and, depending on the weight of the art, you may be able to avoid putting holes in the walls by using adhesive removable mounting tabs.
9 | Visualizer: Nicolas JOUSLINGrayscale themes allow the stark black-and-white artwork to pop out from the background. The tiny golden accent springs to life thanks to the pair of dandelion yellow chairs.
You’re officially ready to choose and hang wall art like a pro. Turn those boring white or beige walls into a thing of beauty by choosing large, colorful or textural pieces that add life to your space.
Contemporary wall art mirrors the contemporary furnishings of this loft. Image: More Design and Build
An expansive wall got a treatment of metal butterflies hung in an airy, flowy pattern that looks like they’re flying right out the window. Image: West Chin Architects
26 | Visualizer: Le AnhA patchwork miniature bulldog brings out all of the most delicate patterns used within this chic blue-toned interior. Even without the sparing accents, the artwork would still stand on its own as a charismatic focal point.
13 | Visualizer: Azovskiy & Pahomova ArchitectsGorgeous! Here, the light tones on the geometric prints stand out against their neutral backdrop. Rich furniture textures seem to complement the artwork rather than the other way around.
Perhaps one of the easiest ways of dressing up a blank wall is by propping a mirror up against it. Mirrors have the power to open up a space, and as shown in a guest room of Amanda Seyfried’s Catskills retreat, opting out of hanging it gives the room a relaxed feel. The walls here are painted in White Dove by Benjamin Moore.
A painting nearly the length of the sofa is the right scale for this living room. Image: Daniel Paya Design
Graphic yet tonal in black and white, the oversized wall panel is the focal point of the dining room. Image: D&D Interiors
What if you have a gigantic wall? Large canvas wall art can be very expensive or hard to get into your apartment. Instead, choose smaller pieces that can be laid like a collage or gallery wall like the contemporary living room above.
2 | Visualizer: Andrew SokrutaThis bold painting stands in contrast with the sharp and precise angles of the tables to great effect.
In this airy California living room, an antique mirror from India hangs over the fireplace, catching light to expand the room and illuminate the relaxed modern decor.
In Steven Gambrel’s Chicago apartment, a troika of framed artworks hang at varying lengths in a narrow wall niche, livening up the narrow recess between the chimney and the entrance.
The master bedroom of a Brooklyn apartment features a bed by Ballard Designs upholstered in a Lake August fabric and topped with a vintage Moroccan blanket and a pillow from Breuckelen Berber. The light fixture is from West Elm, the sconces are by Serena & Lily, the painting is by Alex Mason and the walls are painted in Benjamin Moore’s Gray Owl.
Andy Cohen’s Manhattan duplex doesn’t have many bare walls, but this one in his sitting room is dressed up with a statement-making fireplace. A Roy Lichtenstein lithograph hangs above the Chesney’s mantel in Nero Bilbao marble, which is a piece of art in its own right.
In a San Francisco home, a single piece of artwork by Joan Mitchell is enough to make a statement on the blank walls painted in Benjamin Moore’s Super White. The headboard is covered in a Rogers & Goffigon fabric, the bed linens are by Sue Fisher King and the bedspread is antique Belgian linen.
This bold, graphic canvas is hung at a good sight line height, even though the cabinet beneath it is low. Image: Works Photography
Two brass-and-alabaster pendants by Humbert & Poyet flank a photograph by Yves Marchand and Romain Meffre for added dimension in this Monaco apartment. The artworks at left are by Alex Perweiler.
10 | Visualizer: Gutarev Vlad A great example of a print that matches both the aesthetic and the attitude of a room – it’s youthful, fun, and playfully aware. Nobody can frown near a pop art likeness of SpongeBob, right?
This Mexican treehouse has a living room with worldly charm, distinguished most notably by a tapestry created from a traditional Bhutanese man’s robe and hung on the wall. The sofa and ottoman are by Ligne Roset, the Saarinen side table is by Knoll and the chairs are by Hans Wegner.
A narrow wall with two framed images mirrors the greenery outside the window. Image: Just Perfect Staging
22 | Visualizer: Razvan Barsan + PartnersThis living room does away with traditional conventions altogether. A dramatic impressionist ship joins a group of carefully arranged frames on the right, with functional wall art in the form of a clock to the left.
The Art of Wall Art: Modern Wall Decor Ideas and How to Hang Pictures Like a Pro
Next, decide how high to hang your wall art. Wall art height is the concept that goes wrong the most. The general rule of thumb is to hang wall art at your sight line, so you don’t have to look up too high or too low at it. That means the center of your wall art area is about 60 inches from the ground.
30 | Visualizer: Alla KoganDramatic, minimalistic, and perfectly coordinated – this large print does well to center the living space and blends seamlessly with the rest of the interior accents.
This piece of art is perfectly centered and highlighted with a spotlight. Image: Zephyr Interiors
In the dining room of a New York home filled with art, a piece of textured wall artwork is by Rudolf Stingel. The lacy look of the work harmonizes with the smooth backdrop, which has been painted in a dove gray shade that closely matches the piece.
Arrange a variety of sculptures on your wall for an artsy, 3-dimensional effect. This French home belonging to a Middle Eastern princess showcases a series of sculptures by Romain Sarrot. The armchair is by Andrew Martin and is upholstered in a Beacon Hill fabric. The cocktail table is by Willy Daro and the 1950s lamp is by Marianna.
In a gorgeous, color-splashed room, the focal point of the gallery wall is an Indian sign painting of a tiger, surrounded by a charming hodgepodge of smaller framed pieces.
Accent a dull wall with some spectacular lighting that doesn’t require anything more than plugging it in. In the living room of fashion designer Erin Beatty and filmmaker Lex Sidon’s West Village duplex, which was designed by Lara Apponyi and Michael Woodcock of Work + Sea, the floor lamp is by Noir and the surrounding paintings are by Jimmy Lee Sudduth, left, and Willie Jinks.
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Use multiple panels of wall art to fill a larger wall. Image: GNE Architecture
You don’t always have to center your wall art. Create a vignette instead. Image: Works Photography
To choose a perfectly sized piece of art, measure the blank wall and deduct 12-24 inches. Image: Niche Interiors
Although the art is monochromatic like the rest of the room, it adds a finished look to the wall. Image: Horrigan Architects
20 | Visualizer: Denis Melnik Ever wondered how to coordinate an interior around two very dissimilar art styles? This space provides welcome inspiration. It’s an eclectic interior but pulls together around the ambiance of the artwork chosen.
In the living room of Kris Ghesquière and Eva Claessens’s house in southeastern Uruguay, a symphony of corresponding art works with yellow lamb sculptures by William Sweetlove and paintings and a feather sculpture by Claessens.
A diptych (two panels of art) flows from one canvas to the other to add a sophisticated touch to this living room. Image: Purdy Designs
Pull together the colors of the room and the accessories with the right wall art panels. Image: Mandeville Canyon Designs