Tips for Owners of Modern Art


Modern art is sensitive to changes in external conditions and always in need of proper handling. Thereby, Fine Art Shippers are going to share the basic rules of storage, care, and transportation of such objects. However, it is vital to note that these tips can be applied to only those works of modern and contemporary art that are initially in good condition.

Let’s start from the storage. First of all, it is very important to ensure compliance with the humidity and temperature norms. The optimal museum conditions are air temperature in the range between +18°C and + 22°C and relative humidity of the northern climate of about 50% ± 5% (RH). The humidity can be controlled by raising or lowering the temperature that, in its turn, should be kept uniform: sudden changes and overheating in indoor air are unacceptable. It should be changed smoothly and gradually depending on the season. For heating and cooling, dehumidification and humidification of the air, as well as for dust removal, you can use air conditioning. However, it should be positioned so that the air flow of any velocity and direction cannot affect modern art objects. Airing the room through the windows is possible only if the difference between the temperature and humidity inside and outside is very small.

Properly chosen lighting can help convey the color and texture of the artwork as closely as possible, as well as emphasize its artistic merits. This is especially true for oil paintings, watercolor paintings, and acrylic paintings. However, the light level should not affect the condition of fine art pieces. First of all, the exhibits should not be placed in direct sunlight. Use curtains or blinds of light colors. In general, the safest for contemporary art objects is considered halogen, fluorescent, or fiber optic lighting. Besides, you can remove dust from the front side of the painting only with the help of a wide soft squirrel long nap brush or a clean mitten made from velvet, flannel, or any other material that absorbs the dust. The pressure on the surface should be the minimum. As for the reverse side of the painting, you can remove dust from it with a soft cloth or a short bristle brush.

Finally, a few words about modern art transportation: all artworks, especially canvas art paintings, should be handled very carefully. Do not touch the surface of the canvas to avoid damage of the paint layer. Make it very gently, without jolting. In addition, when transporting works of art, you should also take into account the outside temperature. Please do it during the dry weather if possible and avoid sudden changes in temperature. Fine Art Shippers will take care of everything else! Do not hesitate to contact us for any further information and consultation.