How to decorate with Sculpture
Sculpture is all around us. From monumental public art to local war memorials, stone statues in religious buildings or stunning structures dominating horizon lines; we're lucky to live in a world that celebrates the three-dimensional in art.
And yet, when expanding our art collections or perusing a fair, sculpture is often not the first thing we plan to take home with us. We're more familiar, and therefore comfortable with paintings, photography or prints, so we plump for something 2-D instead. It’s not so much that sculpture doesn’t move us or catch our eye; rather, we are unsure where it should live in our home.
That’s where we come in. In our quest to help our wonderful visitors and online art-lovers fall in love with their perfect artwork, no matter the medium, style or interior, we’ve compiled a handy list of inspirational design hacks to incorporate sculpture into your home. For those who have dipped their toe into collecting sculpture already, you’ll know that investing in a 3D piece can really uplift your home. Choosing to decorate with sculpture is an amazingly simple way to overhaul a room and really add that wow factor. As sculptures come in all sorts of shapes and sizes, with materials ranging from bronze, marble, porcelain, wood and even paper, there’s no end to the interior design options when choosing that new piece. So whether your short on space, confidence or ideas, read on for some tips to use sculpture to help bring your rooms to life.
Don’t be afraid of colour…
Sculpture may bring to mind works of greying marble or stone; but a sculpture is a great way to incorporate flashes of bright colour to lighter, more subdued spaces without committing to hanging work. Furthermore, you can move your sculpture around with minimal fuss, rather than worrying about rehanging work if the colour is too bold. You don’t need to opt for something massive either — take the vivid turquoise work of Philip Hearsey’s Discovery VI (above). With its beautifully speckled colouration, it’s a perfect step if you’re looking to add pockets of colour to your mantle piece or a side table.
For something bigger and bolder, how about the stand alone sculptures of Nicolas Dubreuille? His abstract works, like "Untitled - 228" (pictured) need a little room to breathe, but would work fabulously in the corner of your dining-room, living-room, or even a kitchen, where their bright primary colours would look fantastic against white or cream tiles. Residing on the border of abstract and figuration, these unusual pieces are an exciting addition to your space.
Likewise, adding a diverse texture, particularly within clean and modern interiors, to a room can really help add some grit and contrast to your space without making it feel cluttered. How about this piece by Adela Powell? Its intensely textural ceramic form would make a gorgeous juxtaposition with cleaner matte or gloss surfaces. Still on a figurative note, we love the smooth, sleek finish of Rose Eva’s Petris. Made from red egyptian onyx, it would look beautiful in a clean, neutral space with little to distract from its voluptuous curves.
Sometimes, a piece needs to speak for itself, and that’s exactly how we feel about the original work of Charlotte Campion (above), whose springy sculptural forms would effortlessly inject a dose of lightheartedness and play to any interior. Mixing the levity of pop art with the sombreness of nature, her large pieces are often set up in a captivating sense of balance; at once heavy and delicate, stationary and moving. The resulting works remind us that, despite its associations with monumentality, sculpture can be a very playful and fragile form.
A piece like this would be a brilliant talking point, so let it shine in a bigger room where friends and family can see it.
Have Fun with Pairings
There’s all sorts of ways to add some oomph to your sculpture placement. Pairing it with another artwork like a photograph or a collage, contrasting textures by placing on top of a rug or carpet, or even in front of mirrors to add the illusion of spaces — these are just a few tips to really enhance your new piece and seamlessly incorporate it into your home. And you can have fun with this, letting the setting give the work a slightly different feel. We love the idea of placing Mark Beattie’s brilliantly bouncy Copper and Black Orbital in a surprising spot, like a conservatory surrounded by glass, plants or flowers, to accentuate the contrasting colours of the copper and black even more.
Be Savvy with Space
We know that we’re not all blessed with large airy spaces to house our amassing art collection — but the beauty of sculpture is their range of scale mean that smaller pieces can be easily incorporated into rooms such as bedrooms or bathrooms, particularly those which have exposed storage or shelving. With this in mind, Alison Bell’s vibrant and joyful little pieces would work wonderfully in cosy, busy spaces, nestled amongst other items on shelves to create a bohemian, nostalgic feel. It’s a winning way to add some sculptures without having to completely overhaul a room.
Don’t forget — your outdoor spaces can benefit from work made from durable materials, particularly metal. Adding sculpture to your garden, patio or balcony is a good space saving hack, whilst upgrading your exterior and giving your outdoor’s some love. How about adding one of Ian Turnock’s fantastic pieces to your garden? Tunnock’s background in graphic design gives his work a structural, graphic feel, as his sculptures exploring natural forms through line. These would make a welcome addition to any outdoor space — and if placed near a window or glass door, you’ll be able to view the work from the inside, with their captivating silhouettes casting pretty shadows as well.
We hope you’re now feeling inspired to factor in some gorgeous sculpture into your home - remember to share any of your own tips or photos with us too!
Sadegh Adham, 2017, Black Cow, 2017, bronze, £950, Capital Art London.
Featured art from first to last:
Philip Hearsey, Discovery VI, 2014, bronze, £975, Degree Art.
Nicolas Dubreuille, Untitled - 228, 2010, mixed media, £3,000, French Art Studio.
Adela Powell, Torso I, 2016, ceramic, £1,650, REN Fine Art.
Rose Eva, Petris, 2018, marble, £3,200, Carina Haslam Art.
Charlotte Champion, Love Tree, 2016, bronze, £5,700, French Art Studio.
Mark Beattie, Copper and Black Orbital, 2017, copper, £1,150, Degree Art.
Alison Bell, Cock a snook, 2013, bronze, £795, Will's Art Warehouse.