queen west

3 Tips for Hanging a Painting

So, you’ve just fallen in love with a piece of art you’ve seen in your local art gallery. You know that it would be the PERFECT addition to your home, so you pass through and buy it. The gallery director puts a little red sticker on it, signifying that this particular piece is spoken for; its dance card is full. Now comes the hard part: waiting for the exhibition to be over, so you can proudly display your new cherished treasure. But how should one display art? There must be rules to follow or a guideline? Sort of. Below are Twist Gallery’s 3 Tips for Hanging a Painting. Enjoy!

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🎨 Hang a painting by its focal point.

Every piece of art is exceptional and different. Art tells unique stories, boasts diverse triumphs and impacts viewers individually. Therefore, it’s your job; nay your duty, scratch that; your privilege to decide where the art’s focal point is located. Essentially, the focal point, is where the viewer’s eye is naturally drawn. Often times, this is the centre of the painting, however many artists play with asymmetry in space and varying scale. So, what does that mean? It’s up to you! You fell in love with this painting for a reason. Where does your eye naturally fall on the canvas? This part of the painting should be hung level with your eye. 

For instance, check out this vivid piece by Sandra Di Leo below.

Figure 1 “Rebel” by Sandra Di Leo; 30 X 40 acrylic on canvas; $2,100

Figure 1 “Rebel” by Sandra Di Leo; 30 X 40 acrylic on canvas; $2,100

At Twist, we’ve been debating where one’s eye instinctively falls on Di Leo’s work. Some follow the curves of the powerful black lines reaching rest inside the circular shapes. However, other eyes tend to focus on the bright colours, especially the electrifying greens and glowing pinks. Wherever you decide the focal point is located, it should be hung close to eye level. 


🎨 Carefully think about lighting the artwork. 


Lighting can be tricky, especially if you don’t have track mounted lights at your home. You want to avoid direct sunlight because it can be very damaging to surfaces. Try to mount the art in a room with lots of natural indirect light. Also, you’ll want to give your artwork even light. This is why many gallery’s mount works on walls with numerous light sources to ensure an even amount of light bathing the canvas. Lastly, consider the type of light (if not natural light). Fluorescent light is awful for dramatic art.  You’d be wise to stick with bulbs and light sources that replicate soft daylight. For example, take a glance at Courtney Senior’s “Where the Magic Happens”.

Figure 2 “Where the Magic Happens” by Courtney Senior; 48 x 48 acrylic on canvas; $2,000

Figure 2 “Where the Magic Happens” by Courtney Senior; 48 x 48 acrylic on canvas; $2,000

As the bright colours shatter and splinter apart revealing the strong dark tones of the background, Senior’s expression is fully realized. A robust piece such as this requires a room full of indirect light. Any direct sunshine or incandescent light would overwhelm the already strong colour pallet presented. 


🎨 Group pieces of art together for dramatic effect.

When you are decorating a space, consider how several paintings can work together. Perhaps the canvas’ were created by the same artist and represent similar thematic elements or feelings? Conversely, this can work when the paintings are dissimilar. Imagine the contrast and complication to viewers by pairing pieces that clash or challenge each other. Can you think of a time when artistic elements clashed so strongly that the effect was incredibly profound and memorable? After all, art is about expression and creativity. Ultimately, it's up to you. Consider the work of Elena Dinissuk featured next.

Figure 3 “Beach Tranquility” by Elena Dinissuk; 24 x 24 acrylic on wood; $500

Figure 3 “Beach Tranquility” by Elena Dinissuk; 24 x 24 acrylic on wood; $500

Figure 4 “Flying Over the Ocean” by Elena Dinissuk; 24 x 24 acrylic on wood; $500

Figure 4 “Flying Over the Ocean” by Elena Dinissuk; 24 x 24 acrylic on wood; $500

These two pieces compliment and accent each other. The wild and energetic ocean waters of the first painting is referenced by the same blue hues in the second. Furthermore, viewers regard the land and sky embodied with oranges and pale blues in the second painting. This only highlights the lack of land in the first painting. As viewers begin to consider both paintings simultaneously, they see elements that are repeated and elements that exists individually. Dinissuk’s work instigates an exciting story of the majestic mighty ocean and our beautiful planet.


We hope you’ve enjoyed reading our 3 tips for hanging a painting. And if you think we’ve missed anything, please comment below and let us know your tips. We’d also love to hear from anyone who has purchased from Twist Gallery in the past. How did you hang your art? Share a picture on Instagram and remember to tag us! @twistgalley 


And since you’re here, why not check out the other artists in our Artist Showcase? CLICK HERE.

To see what’s Upcoming at Twist Gallery CLICK HERE.

Keep us in your focal point by following us @Twistgallery and @TwistGallery!

Toronto: Art is who we are

Written by: Aleksandra Kaliszuk

The City of Toronto has a diverse identity, thriving in arts and culture. Toronto is home to 66% more artists than any other Canadian city. This is directly reflected in the numerous galleries, local eateries, museums and startups that make the city so interesting; the opportunities to create and experience art are everywhere! Toronto hosts 80 film festivals, is home to 10 city owned museums, 200 professional internationally known performing arts organizations, and hosts numerous annual events that support art culture, such as Nuit Blanche, Doors Open Toronto and Cavalcade of Lights. Such attractions and events contribute to the city’s sense of involvement and community. Toronto celebrates local talent and often showcases it throughout the city; there are more than 200 city owned public art works and historical monuments located throughout the city contributing to the generally urban landscape. There are often new installations appearing in new spots throughout the city, such as the annual Waterfront BIA exhibitions of lakefront art (up until February 25, 2018); encouraging city dwellers to pause hibernating during this cold season and explore.

Retrieved from torontolife.ca

The plethora of cultural hubs and attractions in downtown Toronto make it easy for seemingly anyone to find something they are interested in experiencing or pursuing. Annually, Toronto’s cultural economy contributes approximately $11.3 billion to the city’s GDP, which is more than the energy, agriculture, mining, and forestry industries contribute combined!

Most attractions such as museums, galleries, and artistically driven neighbourhoods are located in and around the downtown core, such as the West Queen West BIA (coincidently where Twist Gallery is located) making it a desirable area for many tourists and Torontonians to visit. These areas are also home to some of the city’s most recognizable, and photogenic works of graffiti and street art created by local artists such as Ben Johnston, Kellen Hatanaka, and Arturo Parada (also known as DUROTHETHIRD).  Each of their works can be seen along Queen Street West, extending the charm of Queen Street’s infamous Graffiti Alley to other areas of downtown. Their work brightens up our city by adding colour and artistic flare while keeping it from becoming a boring concrete jungle. No wonder Queen Street West was noted as one of the hip-est streets on the globe in 2014 by Vogue Magazine!

Retrieved from westqueenwest.ca

Being part of the city, we at Twist Gallery, love to support the community and local artists. Our April group exhibit will do just that: support local artists and showcase Toronto cityscapes through their unique perspectives.