Moving Fine Art and Paintings during Removals to Spain


Moving house to Spain can be both an exciting and daunting experience; no matter where in Spain you’re travelling. Along with all the other things to consider – sorting bills, packing up what belongings you want to take, searching for a new home etc. – it’s important to ensure your most fragile items receive special care: particularly fine art and paintings that have deep sentimental value regardless of monetary worth.

We understand these valuable possessions are treasured by families; they may even be inherited from previous generations so we strive to provide the right technology and solutions for moving such irreplaceable pieces carefully and securely during any house removals journey to Spain. Read on as our expert team at Matthew James Removals Spain discuss why tailored planning is essential for smooth relocation of individual works of art…

Prepare Your Fine Art and Paintings Before Moving

Moving can be an overwhelming task, especially when you need to transport your precious fine art and paintings. You’ll want to make sure that each item is carefully packed and protected during transit.

When wrapping valuable oil paintings, it’s essential to use the right kind of paper to ensure that the painting is protected from damage. Here are the types of paper commonly recommended:

  1. Acid-Free Tissue Paper: This is often the first choice for wrapping oil paintings. Acid-free tissue paper is gentle on the paint surface and doesn’t leave any harmful residues. It’s especially important for protecting the surface of freshly painted or sensitive works.
  2. Glassine Paper: Glassine is a smooth, glossy paper that is air, water, and grease resistant. It’s commonly used by artists and conservators to protect the surface of paintings and drawings. Glassine paper is ideal for protecting the paint surface from dust and moisture.
  3. Archival Quality Paper: If long-term storage is a concern, using archival quality paper is advisable. This type of paper is designed to be durable and resistant to aging, ensuring that it won’t damage the painting over time.

When wrapping an oil painting, it’s important to ensure that the paper is large enough to cover the entire surface of the painting, including the edges. The paper should be secured with a pH-neutral tape or tied with a string rather than using regular adhesive tape, which can leave a residue or damage the paint.

Additionally, for extra protection, especially during transportation, consider using bubble wrap or foam board around the wrapped painting. However, it’s important to first wrap the painting in one of the papers listed above before using these materials to avoid direct contact with the painting’s surface.

Corner protection is crucial for valuable oil paintings, especially during transportation or storage, to prevent damage to the corners and edges, which are particularly vulnerable. Here are some common methods for corner protection:

  1. Cardboard Corner Protectors: These are L-shaped protectors that fit over the corners of the frame. They can be purchased pre-made or can be custom cut from sturdy cardboard. They provide a physical barrier against knocks and pressure.
  2. Foam Corner Protectors: Similar to cardboard corner protectors, these are made from foam and offer a cushioned protection. They are especially useful for more delicate frames or where extra shock absorption is needed.
  3. Bubble Wrap or Foam Padding: In addition to corner protectors, wrapping the corners with bubble wrap or foam padding adds an extra layer of protection. This can be particularly important when dealing with longer transportation times or less controlled environments.
  4. Custom-built Crates or Boxes: For high-value or extremely fragile paintings, custom-built crates or boxes that accommodate the entire painting, including corner protectors, offer the most comprehensive protection. These containers can be built to exact specifications and include padding and support where needed.
  5. Soft Wrapping Materials: For short-term protection or storage, soft materials like felt or foam sheets can be cut and placed around the corners before wrapping the painting. This method provides a buffer against minor impacts.

When applying corner protection, ensure that the materials are securely attached but not so tight as to put pressure on the painting’s frame or surface. It’s also important to use materials that won’t leave residue or react chemically with the painting or frame.

Wearing White Gloves When Handling Paintings

Using white gloves when handling valuable oil paintings is a widely recommended practice, and there are several reasons for this:

  1. Prevention of Oil and Dirt Transfer: Human skin naturally produces oils and can carry dirt or other contaminants. These substances can be transferred to the surface of a painting, potentially causing damage over time. White gloves, typically made from cotton, prevent direct contact and thus protect the artwork from these oils and contaminants.
  2. Reduced Risk of Damage: Wearing gloves can provide a better grip on the painting, reducing the risk of accidental slipping or dropping. This is particularly important when handling large or unwieldy pieces.
  3. Material Considerations: Cotton gloves are most commonly used because they are soft and less likely to scratch or abrade the painting’s surface or frame. However, in some cases, nitrile or latex gloves might be preferred, especially if the painting has surfaces that could snag on cotton fibers. These gloves also prevent fingerprint marks and are hypoallergenic.
  4. Professional Handling: Using gloves is a standard practice in museums and galleries and is seen as a sign of professionalism and respect for the artwork. It demonstrates a commitment to preserving the integrity and longevity of the painting.

It’s important to ensure that the gloves are clean and free from any substances that could be transferred to the artwork. Also, while gloves provide a layer of protection, careful and mindful handling should always be the priority when dealing with valuable art.

Hire Professional Movers To Europe Who are Experienced with Handling Fine Art and Paintings

Moving is always a daunting task, especially when it comes to handling valuable fine art and paintings. One wrong move and a priceless masterpiece can be ruined, leaving you with a costly and heartbreaking mistake. That’s why it’s crucial to hire a professional mover like Matthew James Removals Spain who not only has experience in moving, but also have specialised knowledge in handling delicate items.

A professional art mover has years of experience moving various types of artwork and knows how to pack, transit and deliver them safely. You’ll feel confident knowing that your artwork is in the hands of someone who has a deep understanding of the intricacies and sensitivity of the pieces. So, if you’re planning on moving and want to ensure the safety of your cherished pieces, don’t hesitate to hire Matthew James Removals Spain.


Our Branches in Spain

Matthew James Removals & Storage SL
Calle Alonso Cano 19
Poligono Industrial
Estepona, Malaga
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C/Anselm Clave
S/N Pol 16, Sant Feliu
De LloBregat
Tel: (0034) 931 84 54 94
Tel: 0044 (0) 1322 251 000

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