From serving as a relaxing haven to being a welcoming space for entertaining guests, your living room is arguably one of the most important spaces in your home. Nevertheless, these two vastly different functions can make choosing the right interior décor tricky – especially when it comes to artwork.
Have a large feature wall to fill or maybe you want to use art in a more subtle way? If you’re craving a little creative inspiration, let’s take a look at a few of our favourite paintings for living room ideas.
Nature is a truly wonderful source of inspiration, and it can easily be used to create a calming environment indoors too. For this very reason, paintings inspired by the natural world are a particularly great option for a living room. Why not evoke the tropics with Hannah Woodhouse’s bold tropical-inspired giclée prints? Alternatively, Keekopie’s photo-realist works of forests overlaid with colourful neon shades are a great match for more contemporary homes.
One great way to get both yourself and your house guests interacting with a space is to select artwork that tells a story. This might be a visual journey told through a series of travel-related prints. Or it could be an intensely detailed collage with multiple layers of meaning, such as those found in pop art aficionado, Peter Blake’s, Paris series.
The living room is a space that you spend a lot of time in, so you’ll want to factor your own interests and tastes into your artwork selection. Have a passion for music? Love to travel? Or maybe you’re fond of a particular colour like bright orange or electric blue? Incorporate whatever makes you tick into your interior décor and you’ll never get tired of looking at it.
Already decorated the rest of your living room? It can be a good idea to bear in mind the colours, styles and themes that already exist in the space. If you’ve gone for fairly minimalist décor, you can pretty much have free reign with what artwork you put up. However, if you’ve chosen a bold paint palette or some striking wallpaper, you may want to coordinate your paintings, prints and sculptures to avoid creating a space that’s too busy and, therefore not relaxing.
Do you count celebrities, musicians or pop culture icons among your favourite people? Why not invite them into your living room through the medium of art? David Studwell is the king of creating prints of cult celebrities, especially those who rose to fame during the ‘70s and ‘80s.
If you have a love of multiple artists and artistic genres, there’s no need to choose just one. Instead, try creating a bold, central gallery wall. David Studwell's Marilyn Monroe artwork is one of our top paintings for living room ideas for those with a stretch of blank wall that’s in desperate need of being filled. Creating a gallery wall that’s cohesive and personal to you couldn’t be easier either – simply follow our inspiring tips on how to create a gallery wall.
Just because the walls in your living room feature wallpaper, that doesn’t mean you can’t put up some beautiful artwork too. Sometimes, placing a print over a brightly patterned wallpaper can add depth to a room or give it an extra dose of style. Stick to more minimalist prints in a single bold colour or experiment with eye-catching typography.
Paintings don’t solely have to sit on a blank wall. If you’ve not got a whole lot of wall space or you want to create a unique feature in your living room, why not incorporate your art into your furnishings? Smaller framed prints can easily be placed on floating shelves, while a large canvas makes a fantastic focal point when framed by a large square bookcase. Need help on where to place your artwork? Read our blog on how to pick the right artwork for your space.
Already selected some artwork for your living room and want to work out how best to display it? Flaunt your pieces as if they were on display in a gallery using clever LED backlighting around the frames. This will not only make your paintings stand out, but the additional light will help create a warm, comforting glow that’s ideal for relaxation.
Few interior trends have withstood the test of time quite like monochrome. Black and white will always be a classic combination, whether you integrate it into your living room furnishings or your wall décor. Monochrome artwork is ideal for adding some drama to an otherwise plain space. It additionally works well in rooms that have a lot of colours in them already or if you’re keen to create a vintage-inspired aesthetic.
Echoing your personal opinions on certain issues – whether that’s politics or pop culture – can be another great inspirational tool for your living room décor. There are so many other ways to create a statement too, whether that’s by choosing bold colours, arranging a dozen different paintings on one wall or simply selecting a piece of art that makes anyone entering your home stop and think.
Subscribe to the ‘go big or go home’ philosophy? That can also be transferred to your choice of living room art. Sometimes, a plain backdrop is screaming out for a single large canvas or print to give it some personality. You might want to go for something abstract like the grand, graffiti-style canvases of Dragomir Misina or keep it cool and classic with a giant Andy Warhol print.
One major consideration when choosing paintings for a living room is what frames to pair with them. Will you go for something white to blend in with a pale background wall or do you want the frame to contrast with the colours in the art itself? You could even select a more ornate hard-wood frame or go for one without a border if you prefer to keep your art the centre of attention.
Art doesn’t just have to reflect landscapes, people and objects. Typography is a brilliant idea for a living room as it allows you to be playful or even influence its ambiance. Babak Ganjei’s dark humour and clever cultural references make his typography perfect for more contemporary homes. Or why not browse the neon slogans and provocative musings of Dominic Bradnum?
Prefer artwork that makes you stop and think? Few styles have this ability more than photo-realism. These sorts of paintings are often more casual and creative than actual photos, making them a good pick for living rooms. Ian Robinson’s exquisite oil paintings of objects from decades gone by are perfect for creating an aura of comforting nostalgia. Similarly, Horace Panter’s pop art-inspired cassette prints are a sublime choice for music lovers.
Want to feel inspired every time you enter your living room? This couldn’t be simpler than with art that creates a sense of wanderlust. The word describes ‘a strong desire to travel’ and that’s exactly how you’ll feel looking at Frances Featherstone’s works. Her unique series of giclée prints allow you to recreate the sensation of staring out of an aeroplane window at new and exciting terrains. Why not position a few in a row to create a bold statement wall? If you need a few tips, here's out advice on hoe to create the perfect gallery wall.
Now you have a few ideas, why not start planning your dream living room art makeover? Browse our full collection of living room artworks and spice up your living room today.