Tips on How to Ship Your Valuable Painting

Paintings are safest on the wall. But when you must ship them...

There is no avoiding the fact that paintings are safest when they are left on the wall in a climate-controlled space. However, there are good reasons for moving a painting: it may be bought or sold, you may lend it for exhibition, or you may need to ship it to a conservator for repair or restoration. The ideal choice in any of these situations is to use a shipping company that specializes in fine art. Check our Art-relates Services listings under Transportation to see if there is a company in your area.

If you must hand carry a painting, here are some tips:
Car trunks might subject your painting to harmful extreme temperatures.
Make sure the painting is well padded, especially fragile frame edges.
Wrap the painting in paper, but be sure that it will not touch the painting itself.
Do not tape the protective paper directly to the frame or the painting
Secure the painting within the car. Leaning the painting on a seat, unsecured, is very risky.
Securing the painting flat in the rear of a truck or station wagon is preferred.

If you are packing a painting to be shipped, here are some tips:

Paintings should be packed in a box within a box, with foam packing between the boxes
The outer box should be weatherproof. The inner box should be cushioned on all sides and protect the painting from puncture and dirt.
There should be nothing loose in the package.
The boxes should be assembled with screws. Nailing the box shut with the painting within, risks puncture.
Secure the painting within the car. Leaning the painting on a seat, unsecured, is very risky.
Use synthetic foam packing material. Do not use shredded paper, felt, crumpled tissue paper, dried moss, or excelsior.