Spacious modern living room

Art Protection Includes More Than Just Insurance

Suppose the New Year has inspired you to find that perfect art piece to give a room a fresh look. In that case, there are a few things to remember about protecting that painting or sculpture.

Sure protection includes insurance, but it’s more than just securing a policy, experts say.

“Collectors should know that risk management starts from the point of financial acquisition, even before they take physical possession of the piece,” Laura Doyle, vice president for Chubb Personal Risk Services, told the Wall Street Journal

One of the best ways to protect valuable art is to keep protection in mind when selecting where to display it.

A blank wall above the fireplace mantel might seem like a perfect focal point, but art experts issue caution.

“If you’re going to use the fireplace once a year, then it probably won’t matter,” Kipton Cronkite, an art adviser in Los Angeles, told the WSJ. “But if you’re using it often, the heat can damage a canvas, photograph or print. In that case, consider hanging a less valuable piece above the mantel.”

Additionally, experts say homeowners should check their wall space at different times of the year. You don’t want the sun to hit the art during any season and potentially ruin the piece.

Laura Doyle, of Chubb, also told the WSJ it’s essential to secure insurance early. The loss risk transfers to the buyer when the final payment is made, so be sure insurance is already in place. 

Using a shipping or moving company specializing in fine art is another way to help protect your valuable pieces. 

“Never assume that the movers are going to treat your art as delicately as you will,” Kipton Cronkite told the WSJ.

And experts say it’s OK to think like a gallery. Consider using furniture the way ropes work at museums, to provide an extra defensive line to keep guests from getting too close.