HGTV Urban Oasis 2015: Selecting Wow-Worthy Art

Learn interior designer Brian Patrick Flynn’s process in selecting stunning local art for the HGTV Urban Oasis 2015.

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Photo By: Flynnside Out Productions

Find Your Inspiration

"When it comes to art, it’s totally my thing," says interior designer Brian Patrick Flynn. "Regardless of how low or high-brow you’re going in buying furniture, when you have one-of-a-kind pieces of art it elevates the overall design of the whole room and makes it seem a lot more high-end."

Discovering Asheville Art

"One of the things I do in almost every single house is to have a mix of art that really tells a story," explains Brian. "When I first got to Asheville I wanted to get acquainted with the art neighborhoods, so I went to all of the studios I could find and found a nice mix of genres to make sure the house appeals to a bunch of different types of tastes."

Photograph It First

Before buying on a whim, photograph a desired work of art first and get a feel for how it will look in a space.

More Bang For Your Buck

Often times buying multiple works of art from an art studio can be rewarded with a discount.

Folk Art

Folk art can be a perfect addition to home decor and bring character and interest into a space.

"I don’t think you should count out folk art," says Brian. "It is a very specific style but there is something approachable about it. If you are somebody with really high-end taste, just adding one piece of folk art in the house immediately makes it feel more warm and approachable."

Photograph Graffiti

Street art can be great inspiration for interior color palettes.

Pull from Nature

Landscape photography is a simple and affordable medium that adds visual appeal to a space while celebrating the beauty of the natural environment.

Mix and Match

"When I'm designing a space, I don’t want all of the art to come from the same genre," says Brian. "I love a mix of street art, folk art, really beautiful traditional oil paintings and especially portraits. There’s a personal element about them that makes a house feel like a home, and you don’t want to live in a showroom."

Look Around

One of the best ways to find inspiration is from nature and the surrounding landscape from which you reside.  

Local Landmarks

Photographs of local landmarks serve as great works of art in a space and pay tribute to the location of the home.

Public Art

Artistic communities are a great resource for artistic inspiration. Public art is available to everyone and a simple means to spark the imagination.

Asheville's Scene

"There is a lot more rawness here, there’s a lot of folk art, graffiti and pottery so I didn’t necessarily want the house to be packed with fine art, I wanted it to be a little more unstructured, loose and maybe more edgy," exaplians Brian. "I decided to find a bunch of really interesting pieces that are a little more low-brow but then also up the taste factor by bringing in some really good looking gallery art."

Travel Photography

Find inspiration in your travels and even in the most unexpected places. Don't limit yourself to home decor and art studios alone.

Versatile Colors vs. Bold Colors

Be mindful of the colors of the rooms for which you are choosing art. Bold colored rooms do not work as well with a wide spectrum of colors as do neutral colored rooms.

"If you’re going to be in a colorless home I love the idea of using art to break up all of the neutrality," says Brian. "The other option is if you’re somebody that lives in a colorful house and you don’t want to overload, think of bringing in art that might be a little more subdued like simple blacks and whites, figure drawings or landscapes that have more muted colors."

Invest in Good Framing

A good frame is key. "If you get something from a flea market or if your friend makes you a painting and it’s just a canvas with a sketch on it, invest in good looking framing," encourages Brian. "If you’re going to buy a piece of gallery art that comes in a frame, go ahead and invest in having it professionally framed because it elevates the overall look."