Expert Moving Tips: Moving Art

people carrying canvas art

If you’re planning to relocate, your artwork should be treated with care. While some items like books can easily be stacked in boxes, artwork requires much more special handling to prevent damage. Whether you’re moving down the street or across the country, it’s important to understand the proper ways to protect your artwork efficiently. There’s nothing worse than coming to a new home only to discover a broken sculpture or a damaged painting. Follow these tips and you’ll be able to move your artwork in confidence.

Paintings and Prints

When you’re moving paintings or prints, look for flat picture boxes. These boxes are a bit expensive, but they’re specially designed to safely hold your paintings and keep them in place. Choose boxes that are a few inches larger than the actual painting on each side. This will allow space for you to add padding materials. If your painting has a glass front, consider adding masking tape in an “x” shape to the front.

This will help to prevent the glass from breaking during the move. For unframed paintings and prints, wrap them in several layers of plastic wrap. This will keep the painting from rubbing against other items in the moving truck, which could cause the paint to come off.

For valuable paintings, protect the corners with cardboard reinforcement. Add these reinforcements after you’ve already wrapped them in the protective plastic. Cover every print or painting with several layers of bubble wrap. Cover each piece in both horizontal and vertical directions, and then seal each one securely with high-quality packing tape. Double-check to ensure that the tape is sticking properly.

When you’re ready to box up your paintings, add wadded newspaper to the bottom. Next, put the artwork inside the box and fill in any gaps with extra newspaper. Gently move the box to see if anything shifts and continue filling with padding until it feels secure. Finally, tape and label your box with words like “FRAGILE” and “ARTWORK” so you know how to handle what’s inside.

Sculptures and Statues

Every sculpture is different whether it’s the shape, size, or material that it’s made from. Any extended part of a sculpture, such as an arm, is extremely vulnerable to breaking. To pack your sculptures and statues safely for moving, begin by covering them in layers of cling wrap.

Make sure you get into any holes or nooks to give it additional support. Roll strips of bubble wrap around every part of the sculpture and build up fragile areas. The goal is to be sure that the entire sculpture is fully padded and protected. Seal it with packing tape before you pack it up.

Large sculptures can be challenging to move, so make sure you handle them carefully. Find out how much your larger sculpture weighs and consider moving it using a wooden crate or a sturdy cardboard box. Check the weight capacity of the box before you use it so that it doesn’t fall apart during the move.

Wood crates are recommended for extremely heavy large sculptures. Fill boxes with plenty of padding before you seal them using a moving blanket or bubble wrap.

Finally, if you have valuable artwork, consider paying for extra insurance. This is especially important if you’re hiring a moving company to handle the artwork. With proper care and planning, you’ll have peace of mind knowing your artwork will arrive safely during a move.

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