How to Prepare and Pack Artwork and Statues for Long Term Storage

woman painting in a studio

Regardless of if you are an aspiring artist or art collector, being able to safely store your art is a real challenge. If you have a home studio, but are running out of room, or if you just want to store away some items, getting to know how to properly pack and store art and sculptures is a must.

Keep reading to learn some actionable tips on how to prepare and store your art and sculptures.

Prep Your Paintings For Storage

Paintings are extremely delicate. As a result, they have to be handled with quite a bit of care. It’s important that you put your art away in the best condition possible and then continue maintaining that condition.

Begin this process by cleaning each of your paintings with a microfiber cloth, which will remove any dust. If there is any metal, be sure to wipe it with a bit of oil to minimize the risk of rust. Also,

spray wood with polish to add a bit of protection. After the paintings are cleaned, be sure to wrap them in some type of protective and breathable covering so that bugs aren’t able to get to them. Avoid using bubble or plastic wrap, as this will block air circulation and trap condensation.

It’s best to use felt, foam, cotton, and brown paper with cardboard corners to pack the artwork properly. The very best way to store paintings are to wrap them with a cotton sheet or brown paper. After this, the paintings need to be supported with backing of cardboard or wood to prevent breakage. After the paintings are in the proper boxes, fill the empty space with paper, so they don’t move during transport.

If you have framed artwork it should be stored vertically (never lay it flat) as it may collapse under its weight. Pieces that are more sensitive may puncture or crack due to the weight of the pieces that are put on top of them. If possible, store your art on shelves. If this isn’t a possibility, then use wooden slabs to keep your art off of the ground, which will help you protect it from any water damage. You can store unframed work in plastic sleeves.

Protecting Sculptures For Long Term Storage

The process of storing sculptures is much harder, and they take up much more space. If you have stone sculptures, they are extremely prone to decay from the environment because of pollutants, weather, repeated wetting and drying, and salts. If you are trying to store stone sculptures and you live on the coast, be sure to store them further inland.

Glass and ceramic sculptures aren’t as sensitive to environmental changes, but some have unstable glazes that can react to weather changes, causing cracks to form in the surface. The main cause of damage for these pieces is that they are going to break while being cleaned or when being moved due to improper packing.

Before you store your sculptures, be sure that you clean them well by dusting them off with a soft brush. If you use cotton, it may get caught on the edges and rough surfaces, which will leave all sorts of fibers behind and result in damage. Be sure to bubble wrap each of the pieces, so they remain safe in storage, and then move them in a padded container to avoid any breakage.

Packing and Storing Art and Sculptures

If you have art that you want to keep safe and sound while in storage or being moved, then be sure to use the tips and methods here. Doing so will give you confidence that your items will arrive at their new destination damage free. Being informed is the best way to ensure your art and sculptures remain in great condition, regardless of where they are put or how long they remain in storage.