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How to Display Art at Home

When displaying art in your home, the secret is to trust your heart. 417-land locals, Kathy and Carl Price, have some advice for choosing pieces and displaying them prominently.

By Lucie Amberg

Mar 2020

Art display in local home
Photo by Brandon AlmsPaintings by Gavyn Sky (left) and Don Beaulieu (right) make an impression for guests in the Price's home. Purchase Photo

The idea of collecting and displaying art can be as appealing as it is intimidating. Kathy Price has straightforward advice. “Pick something you like,” she says. Kathy and her husband, Carl, make a practice of incorporating art they love in their Springfield home. But they don’t set out intending to fill a certain space. In fact, Carl says: “We do the opposite. We find things that speak to us.” This means choosing pieces without worrying whether the color palette, the style or the aesthetic will match the existing interiors or furniture in the Prices’ home. “If anything,” Kathy advises, “if it matches, it will blend in,”—which is the opposite end result of what they’re hoping to achieve in their collection.

Over the past several years, the Prices have filled their home with works that stand out, many by Missouri artists, including Jacob Burmood, Gavyn Sky and Betty Parnell. Their collection includes sculptures, two of which are prominently displayed in their living room. To place a large piece, particularly a three-dimensional one, Kathy recommends giving it enough room. “You want it out there so people can walk around it,” she says. And while special lighting might be in order, she often finds it’s not necessary.

When the Prices can’t quite find a way to display a piece of art, they call on experts, like Nathan Taylor at Obelisk Home. “There are great people locally who are so thoughtful,” Kathy says. She recommends utilizing local galleries, events like First Friday Art Walk and organizations like the Springfield Visual Arts Alliance and the Springfield Regional Arts Council (SRAC) to help discover art that speaks to you. Carl’s office serves as a public art space for SRAC’s rotating exhibits, and often, Kathy says, he falls in love with a piece there. At home, their collection not only sparks conversation, it also serves as an informal archive of Price family history and interests. “You tend to buy things that speak to you at the time,” Carl says. “As your journey changes, it changes, too.”

Talavera servingware collection
Photos by Brandon AlmsA portion of Kathy’s Talavera servingware collection hangs above the seating nook where the Prices—pup included—gather for a meal. Kathy started her collection around 1996 with a Talavera piece from the Uriarte Collective, recognized as one of Mexico’s only two authentic producers of the Spanish-inspired ceramic method.
Jacob Burmood pottery vase
Photos by Brandon AlmsSculptor Jacob Burmood created this vase as a technical exercise, and it caught the Prices’ attention during Burmood’s studio show. Burmood has since worked less in pottery to focus on his sculptural works.
Gavyn Sky painting
Photos by Brandon AlmsSwirls of color and shades collide in this Gavyn Sky piece, which evokes a lush tree. Much like the other pieces the Prices collect, this one spoke to the couple and has earned a place displayed prominently in their art-filled home.
Bonded graphite piece by sculptor Jacob Burmood
Photos by Brandon AlmsBonded graphite piece by sculptor Jacob Burmood.
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