The wall above a fireplace is an area of the living or family room that many homeowners struggle with. Should the TV be hung there, a mirror, or artwork? These are all commonly asked questions on this topic. 

There are lots of options that can work really well above the fireplace, and choosing what works for you, and how you use the space is key. Do you predominantly use the room for watching TV, relaxing quietly, or something else? Asking these questions will help you figure out what is the best route for you.

Artwork above a fireplace is a popular choice and can elevate a room. But why is this? And how can you choose the right piece of art for above the fireplace?

In this article, I’m going to take you through why artwork is a great choice for above the fireplace and how to choose the perfect piece!


Why Artwork Above the Fireplace


First, artwork above a fireplace provides a focal point to the room. It draws your eye upwards to help create a sense of height and drama.

Depending on the fireplace mantel and surround you have chosen, they can typically be quite plain in design, and therefore a piece of artwork above helps to add some personality to the room. If you’re a fan of symmetry, artwork is a fantastic choice for keeping this running through above the fireplace itself.

Choosing a piece of art that resonates with you, your family, and your personal interests, adds a huge amount of personality and warmth to any room in the home. And for this reason, artwork is a fabulous choice for hanging above a fireplace.


Artwork above a fireplace adds a focal point to the room while injecting warmth and personality.


Consider the Scale


The size of the artwork you choose above the fireplace can make or break the final look. A piece that is too small will look lost or appear as an afterthought, while something too big will be overwhelming.

A good rule of thumb to follow is for the width of the artwork to be larger than the opening of the fireplace, but smaller than the total width of the mantel. So if you take the measurement from the edge of the fireplace to the edge of the mantel, half of this measurement is where the art should start above the fireplace. Do the same on the other side, and you can work out the optimum width for the artwork! 

The scale of the artwork is crucial to creating a good balance between the fireplace and the art above. The width of the artwork should be larger than the fireplace opening, but smaller than the mantel.


Choose a Style


Now that you know the rough size of artwork you’re looking for, it’s important to choose a style! This will narrow your search down even further to help you select the perfect piece for above the fireplace.

Consider the style of your room, is it more contemporary? If so, an abstract piece would work well, or a large statement photography piece. For a traditional or classic space, a landscape painting or classic portrait may suit the room better.

You can even use the purpose of the room to narrow down the style of art too! Is the room a formal living room? Or a more playful family room? A sophisticated piece may be more suited for the formal of the two, whereas a colorful and explorative piece would work well for the latter.


It’s important to consider the right style of artwork for your space. Do you naturally love brighter colors, or prefer a muted palette? What is the style of the room?


Balance Colors


With all of the above sections in mind, you will be able to start shopping for the perfect piece of art for above the fireplace!

But it doesn’t stop there. 

There is one more thing you should take into account when choosing artwork for above the fireplace! And that is the colors in the piece.

The artwork you choose should complement the other colors in the space. The paint colors, furniture, accessories, and other elements of the room should be considered. Choose a piece that either ties in with this existing palette of colors, or adds an accent color into the mix (yet still works well with the existing colors). 


If you consider the above sections carefully, you will be able to choose a piece of artwork that complements your room while injecting personality and a focal point above the fireplace.