How to Light Home Artwork

Artworks are a perfect way to beautify your home but even the most beautiful artworks can look mediocre under poor lighting conditions. If you are considering placing an artwork in your home, you must invest in lighting that complements the piece because how it is lit can either accentuate or diminish its qualities. You should hire a highly qualified electrician with a good understanding of the lighting options to highlight the details of your artworks. This article gives you insight into the best art lighting techniques and elements like frames, to make the artworks on your walls stand out and look their best.

1. Visualize The Art at Your Space

Art is an expression of a person’s inner beauty and feelings. Therefore, you should have a vivid vision of how you want your home to look with the artworks in it. This vision guides the kind of artworks you purchase, how they are placed in each room and how the electrician installs the lighting. You might be needing a new light installation in parts of your home to effectively light up the artwork. Once you have a clear idea of what you want, communicate it to a skilled expert. Your vision coupled with a professional touch is sure to bring your home to life.

2. Choose The Right Type of Art Lighting Techniques

You can tell the best lights for artworks by how much it draws attention to the subject and not itself. Artworks can be lit in a number of ways however, it is important to note that fluorescent bulbs should be avoided because they appear too bright and white. It is advisable to use lights such as incandescent lights because they mimic daylight and create a warm and comforting ambiance. LED lights represent the most efficient option to explore as they are durable and do not give off heat or UV radiation. You should avoid harsh lights like halogens, which can burn the materials of any part of an Artwork it is directed at. These are some lighting options to choose from:

Home Lighting

2.1. Ceiling-mounted Accent Lights

These lights are perfect for putting artwork in the spotlight. Ceiling-mounted accent lights have a lot of versatility and allow the light’s direction to be adjusted at will. The compatible bulbs also cover a wide area, so this setup is sure to cover the majority of an artwork’s surface. When using these, the lights should be placed so that the beams hit the center of the Artwork, with the fixture at an angle of 30 degrees. Any angles below or above this would have an undesired lighting effect.

2.2 Wall Washers

Wall washers are used to light large Artworks that cover the majority of the wall. They simply “wash the walls” with light, creating a bright wall for the work to be seen. You can use wall washers for both indoor and outdoor lighting. These lights are special because they can create a wide distribution of light and are mostly used for lighting contemporary art collections.

2.3. Track Lighting for Artworks

Track lighting for artworks has been revolutionized and there are many types for you to try out. They used to be quite bogus, unlike the new sleek one. When there are paired accurately with the right lamps, they work just like ceiling-mounted accent lights. Although, they are easier to install and remove if you want another option.

2.4. Picture Lights

Picture lights are a great choice for lighting artworks. They can be mounted either on the wall or on the frame of the artwork. The fixtures use low wattage lamps and are installed close to the artworks. Their intimacy with the artwork helps you captivate the viewer. Picture lights help you boost the beauty of your room’s interior design.

3. Avoid Natural Light

In creating the best lighting for your artworks, you should avoid exposing them to direct sunlight because it is made up of UV and infrared light, which causes the pigment in paints or prints to fade over time. Therefore, it is best to keep your works away from strong natural light on order to prevent damage. Direct sunlight could also ruin other features of your home like the flooring and furniture. Some artists advertise that north-facing light is optimal but you can simply avoid picking a wall where the sunlight can fall directly on your art’s surface.

3.1 The Importance of Picture Frame

Frames are an important feature of lighting an artwork. The type of framing an art has, determines the light fixture you would be installing. If your artwork has a glass frame, the angle of the light should be adjusted to reduce glares. For artworks with textures like acrylic or oil paintings, they should be lit so the shadows created are minimized. If you have picture lights installed, you would be best served by a frame that can support the fixture. Thinner frames are perfect for ceiling or wall-mounted light sources or you can even choose to go frameless. If you want more flexibility with your lighting, choose frames.

3.2 Match The Finish to Your Room

The lighting option you eventually go with should match the finish of your room. Some lights give off warm temperatures while others are cool. You can also have pictures with lights behind them in your home. It is important to choose a light that highlights your artworks and the colors and mood of the room. Everyone loves a home with matching finishes and you can easily achieve this, by effectively relating your choices to an electrician that is experienced in artwork lighting techniques for efficient execution.

4. Understand The Balance of The Room

As much as you are willing to boost your artwork’s beauty with great lighting, it must be done with the utmost consideration for the balance of the room. Care must be taken to make sure the artwork is not the brightest element in a room. You would need the help of an expert to determine the level of lighting needed to enliven your artwork and the room as a whole. The lighting must be done while maintaining the visual essence of the light source. You do not necessarily have to light every artwork unless it adds to the ambiance of the room.

5. Ensure Even Lighting

If you would be taking the pains of lighting your artwork, you must ensure that it is distributed evenly across its surface. Even lighting shows off every detail of the artwork and can be achieved by doing the following:

6. Using Picture Light

Installing multiple low beam lights from different angles. Shadows can be avoided by placing lights at appropriate angles or pulling light sources away. You can also avoid reflections by using museum-grade glass.


When planning how to light your artworks, it is imperative that you choose the right mode of lighting. After installing the light fixtures, you should check to see how well they complement the art by trying them up close and at a distance from it. Lighting artworks is based solely on your lighting preferences and how you want the art to be lit in relation to the other elements in the room.