Fine art is delicate, and transporting it is always a risky business. Incidents, where priceless art pieces get damaged or broken during transport, are endless. The reasons can be as simple as the artwork falling due to handlers stumbling or improper packaging. Whatever the reason, the loss can be irrecoverable; therefore, taking preventive measures is the best way to protect your precious art pieces during a move.
Here are some examples of bad art handling and tips on how you can prevent it.
Example: Lost Lucian Freud Painting
In 2010, a highly valuable painting by Lucian Freud was brought to Sotheby’s for auction. The painting was brought in a wooden crate at the auction place and was allegedly kept on the wrong side of the room near other empty boxes. Two porters there assumed it was empty and gave it away to crutches along with other empty crates. That’s how a priceless piece was lost forever to mankind.
Example: Damaged Rembrandt’s Portrait of an Old Woman
In 2001, the Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts in Moscow sent a valuable art piece by Rembrandt called “Portrait of an Old Woman” to the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston under an exchange. This 1650s classic painting was sent to Houston on a plane, and nobody suspected any problems till the painting was opened at the Houston museum. There, they noticed a gash on the priceless art piece, nearly destroying its beauty. It was concluded that the artwork must have been dropped during transit at some point, creating the tear.
Tips to prevent bad handling of artwork
White glove treatment
Keeping the artwork safe starts with moving it from its original position. Every art piece must get white glove treatment from handlers, or by you if you are packing the artwork yourself. Hence, always wear a light pair of white gloves when you touch the painting and hold it on both sides to ensure it is not damaged.
Ensure the right temperature
Artworks are highly susceptible to damage if you expose them to harsh temperatures. Hence, it is crucial to always store them at a temperature between 69.8- 75.2 degrees Fahrenheit. Always hire professional art moving services to ensure the artworks aren’t exposed to extreme temperatures when transporting them.
Packing the artwork properly is also critical to ensure that it is intact throughout the journey. Unframed art pieces differ from framed pieces. Use proper packaging materials and double-check everything.
The best way to ensure nothing happens to your precious artwork during the transportation is to hire an art moving specialist. They have experienced and professional handlers who know how to move, pack, and install artwork. They also have high-end equipment and tools to ensure your artwork is safe during transit.
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