How to move Art Safely
Talk to your removalist
First thing’s first: If your removalist isn’t aware of your artwork, they can’t account for it when helping you organise appropriate packing materials. Art often requires special packaging, or to be transported separately, so take the time to discuss your options with your removalist team to see where they can help. If they’re unable to at least point you in the right direction of someone who can sell you appropriate packaging, you should potentially reconsider the removalist you’ve chosen – as that’s a major red flag.
It’s usually pretty easy to get specially designed boxes for art work, ask your removalist or pop down to a local gallery to see if they have any contacts or perhaps leftover boxes they might donate to you. If the painting has glass on it, tape a large X across the glass with masking tape to keep the glass in place in the instance of breakage. Then add lots of bubble wrap (more than you think you need) and label the entire thing with FRAGILE. If you’re particularly handy, remove the art work from its frame and pop it in a canvas carton (your local art supply store should store these). If you’re not keen on dismantling the art from its frame, look out for mirror boxes, which are designed with a mirror’s fragility in mind.
Every sculpture is different. Smaller ones can probably be transported by car, and should be. Simply wrap them in a couple of towels and have someone you trust hold the sculpture while you drive. Larger ones should be tackled by your removalist team. Unlike a painting, sculptures are often unusual shapes and won’t fit into the average box. Depending on the material it is made from, your removalists may simply wrap it in moving blankets and put it on the truck as normal, or they may opt for a crate. If you know the approximate weight of your sculpture, let the removalist know as this will assist in the decision making process.
Heirlooms and artefacts
If your piece is a family heirloom or historical artefact, we recommend popping in to your local museum to talk to a professional curator or archivist about the best packaging options. As historical items are often made from materials that can be quite delicate, or may have deteriorated as they’ve aged, it’s important to talk to someone who can identify those materials and talk you through what you should be doing in order to ensure it survives a move – especially if your move is interstate or beyond.