Thursday May 18 2017

Create your own African gallery wall

A gallery wall is one way of hanging art pieces

A gallery wall is one way of hanging art pieces from different visits to African countries. AGENCY PHOTO 

By Phionah Nassanga

African art is one of the distinctive décor styles that define one’s personality. This can be turned into a gallery wall to style up your home and reflect your passions and interests.
Creating an African gallery wall can seem daunting. However, with a few tools and some creativity, you can have a simple selection.
According to Anthony Kitavi, an artist with Nairobi Handcraft Association Cooperative, one must look out for the uniqueness in every African art piece; be it a drawing or a painting as they all hold different meanings and valve to whoever chooses to use them.
Doreen Azaninka, an interior designer with Azan interiors, says it’s the use of art and personal effects that suit the vibe of your home space, incorporating it with different colures such as brown, white, black depending on what you want as there are no restrictions as to which colours to use.
“Taste and preference is the one rule governing African décor although getting to know where your interest is very important. However, incoporate ideas from three different cultures will make your gallery wall outstanding,’’Azaninka says.
To Evelyn Nisiima, an artist and interior designer, much as African décor is done on grounds of choice, there are other factors to consider when designing a gallery wall that will draw attention.
“Ensure each piece stands out. This can be achieved by spacing the art pieces at least 1.5 inches apart,’’ says Nisiima. She adds that when arranging your art pieces, use the largest as your focal point. She cautions one to ensure balance and symmetry as key factors when creating a gallery wall.
“Choosing the right frames will be of great importance if you are working with a collection of artwork across different themes. Using frames of a similar design or style is one way to tie the collection of your home’s style,’’ reveals Nisiima.

What to look out for
Sitting room: Spot an area that is direct to your entrance because this is where your visitors’ eyes will go as they enter into your house. Use pencil drawings or paintings of you and your family that portray a sense of belonging.

Dining room: Multicoloured Woven baskets of different sizes and shapes are also perfect items of décor one can opt for in the dining room. Nisiima also says woodcarvings of different animals or African women hanging in different corners add beauty to your dining room.

Kitchen: When hanging art in the kitchen one must be very careful not to place it near heat sources and areas with high humidity. Combining art work with kitchen items is attractive, for instance one can choose to turn a storage shelf into a work of art.

Corridors: Always keep in mind that a corridor like any other part of the house is essential and needs to be put in to consideration. She advises that African artwork in box frames with a glass placed at different spots in a zigzag form will make your corridor adorable and inviting.

Along the staircase: A staircase gallery wall is most often a diverse decoration built up from frames of various kinds, sizes, shapes, textures and looks. Don’t hesitate to mix everything you like and place various shots, paintings, posters and other artwork inside to create a diverse gallery wall that catches an eye.
“This can be done by keeping the centre of your gallery to 59 inches height and 10 inches from stair to a void damage,” Ninsiima advises.

Expert advice
“Choosing the right frames is important if you are working with a collection of artwork across different themes. Using frames of a similar design or style is one way to tie the collection of your home’s style,” says Nisiima.

editorial@ug.nationmedia.com

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