Hanging Artwork 102

Last week I gave some quick tips about how to choose a location for your artwork. Now we have a video showing the mechanics of installing anchors into your wall to support your artwork.

In this video, Mike explains three common scenarios that you might run into. If you have walls made of drywall, when you screw through the drywall your screw might end up in a piece of wood, it might go into an open space, or it might hit a concrete block, depending on how your space was built.

Installing an anchor to hang your metal art into drywall, wood, or concrete walls.


This is the simplest case because a screw will hold fast in a piece of wood. If you screw into the wall and the screw lands in wood, fantastic. You can hang your art.


In some southern states, particularly Arizona and Florida, homes are often built with concrete cinder block walls. Mike shows you what the inside of the wall might look like and how to tell if this is the case. If your screw hits concrete before it goes all the way in, you’ll need a drywall anchor but it might be too long to fit in the wall in front of the concrete block. So, trim the end of the drywall anchor before you install it. Pro tip: screw the anchor into the wall partway before trimming the tip to get a pilot hole.


This is probably the most common thing that will happen. In most spaces, the wall behind the drywall is open. In this case, install a drywall anchor and then screw a screw into the anchor.


Mike is a seasoned expert, so when he chooses a piece for his art he often knows where to put it just by looking at the space. In the video, you’ll see him simply hold the piece up on the wall until it looks like it is in the right spot. Even though this piece is now hanging in my bedroom and it looks wonderful, I always suggest that when you do it yourself you measure just to make sure you put the hole where you want it!

A good place to start is that the art should be centered at eye level vertically. Now, everyone’s eyes are at a different level, but my eyes are at about five feet, or 60 inches, off the ground. So that’s a good place to start. Now, to center the art, you want half the art above five feet and half below. So measure how high your art is vertically. The piece in the video is 32 inches tall. I want half of that, which is 16 inches. So add half the height of the piece to your eye level: 60 + 16 = 66. So The top of my art should be at 66 inches above the floor. Looking at the keyhole on the back of the piece, I see that my anchor should be a half inch lower than the top of the art, so I should mark my hole at 65.5 inches.

In the video, I wanted this artwork just left of the window. However, it is often the case that you want to center your artwork left to right as well. The calculation is similar, but easier, because it doesn’t matter how wide the artwork is. The hanger is already in the center. So measure the horizontal distance, and take half of it. That is your measurement left or right for the mounting anchor.

At Art & Element we hang wall art almost every day. So if you have any questions, you’re looking for advice, or if we’re in your area and you want some help, just let us know. Use any of the social links below or drop us a note using the form on our About page.

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