This past weekend, I was asked a question that I confess I have been asked before: What can you do to facilitate a rotating art collection? Put another way, what can you do if you’re indecisive, and you can’t figure out what you want to hang above your buffet? Even more pressing, what if your mother drops in once a week with very little notice, and she faints at the sight of nudes, which are the only thing you would hang on the wall, if given the choice?
The answer, of course, depends upon the size of the art you are displaying, but here’s one great answer: You still plant a nail in the wall, but instead of hanging a canvas, you hang a plate stand.
What’s a plate stand? It’s this doohickey, which is also commonly referred to as a tabletop stand and a tabletop easel.
The advantage of hanging this, instead of a simple nail, is that the plate stand creates a “floor” for your artwork, rather than a “ceiling.” Let’s look at this problem from another angle: If I change out an 8×10 for a 5×7, I will almost certainly want the top of each piece to be at a different height. The 5×7, after all, will have an awkward gap between the bottom of the canvas and – say – the light switch. Hanging the plate stand means that I don’t have to create a new hole in my wall if I decide to change my art every day, or even every hour. This plate stand might cost you $5-$7, but it will save you serious time in nailing, re-nailing, and spackling.
Here, for example, are two canvases, one portrait, and one landscape, one 9×11, one 8×10. Both look equally good, as does a 5×7.
I can’t guarantee that this will solve all of your problems, since mothers can be maelstroms unto themselves, but this is a start. Ladies and gentlemen, start rotating!