Steps to Hang a Painting

Hanging a painting

Photo courtesy of Meadows Museum

The artwork you choose to purchase is not only an investment, but also a statement about you. As such, you’ll want to present it in a way that reflects your personal style, offers the best presentation and protects your investment.

Here is a step-by-step, fail-proof guide for hanging your newest masterpiece.

  1. On both sides of the artwork, one-third of the way from the top, secure D-rings to the back of the frame. The museum hangs all artwork from these 2 D-rings using 2 separate hanging hardware/hooks rather than picture wire so that the artwork will stay exactly where you put it.
  2. Next, measure the width of the wall. If you wish for the artwork to be centered from left to right along your wall, mark the center, then measure. Keep in mind that the center of your artwork should be at about eye level, which for most people is about 52 to 57 inches high. Measure the distance between the 2 D-rings and using a level mark that distance on the wall. These 2 points will be where the 2 hanging hardware/hooks are to be installed.
  3. For small, lightweight artworks, you may hang the piece directly on the wall with drywall anchors. For heavier pieces, you’ll need to find a stud for your two anchors. Use a stud finder tool to locate the stud you wish to use. Most studs are found at 16-inch increments in the wall.
  4. If you plan to center a large piece of art but can’t find a stud that allows you to hang the piece right where you want to, cut a thin piece of plywood that’s four inches wide and just long enough to reach from D-ring to D-ring of the artwork. The plywood should span two studs and be secured to them. You’ll mount your picture anchor into this plywood, so place the plywood at a height that allows you to mount the picture anchors appropriately.
  5. Once you install the picture anchor, hang your art piece.

6. Step back and admire your accomplishment!

About Carrie Sanger

AA-ARTS(Museum)

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6 Responses to Steps to Hang a Painting

  1. Marc says:

    Beautiful art should be secure without a doubt. I would suggest never using drywall anchors to hold it. Know that you have a good solid anchor in a stud. I would suggest the Franklin ProSensor stud finder instead of just any stud finder. It is fast and easy to use. I put a link in the website options of the comment form that has reviews and ratings for other stud finders.

    I love your idea for the plywood piece to assist in hanging.

  2. There are styles in accessories just as there are styles in furniture. Accessories should reflect the mood or feeling in a room. For instance, you would expect to see an elegant mirror in a formal living room. But the same mirror would look out-of-place in a family room furnished in pine and chintz. Of course, arranging wall hanging in a museum is an extremely specific task, but it still follows basic rules and standards, i.e. – Never stairstep pictures except over a stairway!

  3. Hanging art work or anything else on the wall in your home has to be done with precision. What does an expensive piece of art work say about you if it is not hung level. The art of hanging pictures is an art for it self.

  4. Thank you for our instruction on how to hang a painting as I did not know how to do it properly 🙂

  5. Now this is something good to know as I do want to start to invest in art. And now I need to find out how to keep good care of my investment. Thanks for this post.

  6. As somebody who hangs a lot of paintings, this article has been really useful. Many thanks.

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