How to start your own art collection (without breaking the bank)
Laura Fulmine, founder of M.A.H Gallery, shares her tips on what to consider when choosing pieces for your home
Tuesday 12 April 2022 By Megan Murray
Founded in 2019, M.A.H Gallery fills a unique gap in the art world. The brand’s acronym describes its purpose as a ‘modern art hire’ service for photo shoots, filming, and events.
‘Historically, it’s been difficult to populate a set with beautiful, high-quality art,’ says stylist, curator, and the gallery’s founder, Laura Fulmine. ‘As a stylist, I used to knock up some canvas myself when working on editorial shoots, just to give the walls some colour.
‘I felt that M.A.H could be a beneficial platform for artists. I know so many stylists who are creating great work for publications, Instagram and brands, and for an artist to be involved in those types of images can lead to huge exposure,’ she explains.
As M.A.H launches on Soho Home with a selection of 40 artists’ work available to buy, Fulmine talks us through her advice for choosing and styling art for the home.
Let art tell your story
‘I have collected a lot of artworks while travelling. It could be anything; an opened out fan, a scribbled note. Art can be abstract and multi-layered; it shows what you find beauty in and where you’ve been. That’s what’s nice about coming into a home full of art. There’s so much to look at and there are different stories behind each piece.’
Experiment with positioning
‘Forget the rules. I think people can be scared of doing art “right” and fall into the trap of thinking they need to position it at a certain height or in a particular space.
‘I’ve always hung art in strange places. Try putting something above a door, across the corner of a room or low down, near the skirting board. That’s what’s exciting about living with art; not having any rules. Just do what you want and create collections.’
Think about your room choice
‘If you want to incorporate art into your home, but don’t know where to start, there are two ways to approach it.
‘Think about how you want this piece to be enjoyed. If it’s quite personal or you want to spend a lot of time looking at it, then you might choose the rooms you spend the most time in, such as a bathroom or bedroom.
‘Or, do you want to show this piece off? If that’s the case, opt for an area that will be seen by other people the most. This is usually the hallway, lounge or kitchen.’
Try a practice run
‘There are lots of factors to consider when placing artwork, so I would advise taping up newspaper in the same size and shape as your piece to see how it sits. You might think it’s too dominant in the space or that particular area of the wall gets a lot of direct sunlight, which will affect a painting or print over time.’
Embrace a refresh
‘As a stylist I’m constantly rearranging my home, but even if that’s not in your nature I’d recommend looking at each room with a fresh eye every few years. Different pieces in different rooms gives them a new life, so you might find that simply switching the art around can transform your home without having to buy anything new.
Join Laura Fulmine and Ben Spriggs from Elle Decoration at Soho.Home.Studio on the King’s Road in London on Thursday 14 April. Together, they’ll discuss how art can transform your space. Book here.