5 Steps for Safe Storage of Your Art Collection

There may come a time when you need to place some of your artwork into storage. Whether you are an artist, an art collector, or just have a few nice paintings, you want to make sure your investment is protected. Here are five tips for placing your artwork into long-term storage.

1. Clean It Up

Before placing your art in an art storage facility, give it a good cleaning. Use a soft brush or microfiber cloth to dust the canvas or clean the glass if your artwork is under glass. Be sure the glass is thoroughly dry before wrapping your picture. Rub a little oil on any metal embellishments on the frame and apply a little polish to wood frames.

2. Properly Pack It

Boxes specifically designed for pictures are the best choice and well worth the investment in protecting your artwork. Carefully wrap your picture with paper, felt or even a blanket. Do not use plastic or bubble wrap, as they can trap condensation. Use cardboard corners to protect the corners of your frame. Pack in the appropriately sized picture box and seal with tape. You may need to add a little filler of paper to take up any extra space and prevent the art from getting jostled around

If your artwork is not framed, do not roll it for storage. Rolling unframed art can cause creases and cracks in the paint. Place the picture between two pieces of cardboard, plywood or foam board, then box in a picture box.

3. Safely Transport It

Transport your artwork with care. After carefully packing, transport your boxes vertically, not stacked. Be mindful of the temperature outside and do not leave your boxes in a hot vehicle, as the heat can impact acrylics or varnishes. Transport your boxes into the storage unit by cart or dolly to lessen the risk of dropping them. You may want to consider hiring a professional to transport your artwork in an appropriately outfitted moving vehicle. Keep in mind that we offer free on-demand pickup services for customers

4. Keep it Off the Floor

You want to keep your boxes off the floor to protect from water damage and allow air circulation. Use shelving, if possible, or use pallets to keep your artwork from direct contact with a concrete floor. Storing your pictures vertically from smallest to largest is best.

5. Store in a Climate-Controlled Facility

The temperature of the location where you store your artwork is important, so renting a climate-controlled self storage unit is essential. You want to eliminate the potential exposure to moisture as much as possible. Temperature fluctuations can cause materials to expand or contract and cause warping, yellowing, fading or the growth of mold. A consistent temperature of 70-75 degrees Fahrenheit is ideal for storing your artwork. Keep the temperature at a level that is comfortable for you and your artwork will be comfortable too!

A little planning and careful consideration of the facility you choose for storing your artwork can go a long way in maintaining a preserving your art for years to come.