Home decor is an integral part of interior design and how you I express my personal style in each room. When considering how to decorate large, blank walls throughout my home, I have two main options – Wall Art Vs Wall Decor. But what exactly is the difference between these two terms, and how do I know which is better suited for the wall spaces in my home?

In this Nousdecor article, I will compare and contrast wall art versus wall decor so you can determine which is the right fit for your home walls.

Key Takeaways

  • Wall art makes a bolder visual statement with large-scale pieces like canvas prints.
  • Wall decor provides more flexibility with small items like picture frames clustered into gallery wall ideas.
  • Both wall art and decor allow you to express your style, whether modern, rustic, minimalist, or colorful.
  • Lean into your room’s purpose by selecting wall pieces that match – like abstract art for a home office or family photos for a living area.
Wall Art Vs Wall Decor: Which Creates More Impact?
Wall Art Vs Wall Decor: Which Creates More Impact?

Wall Art for High Visual Impact

Wall art refers to large, eye-catching pieces designed to make a bold visual impact in a space like anime wall art decor. This includes:

  • Canvas prints
  • Framed artwork
  • Photography prints
  • Paintings
  • Tapestries
  • Large mirrors

The defining characteristic of wall art is the large scale – it’s meant to immediately grab your attention. Pieces are deliberately sized to take up a substantial portion of the wall.

Wall art is often the focal point of a room. It draws the eye with dramatic effect. This makes it ideal for delivering a “wow factor” and setting the tone for a room’s style.

I like to use wall art to establish my decorating theme for a particular space. The bedroom, for example, could feature a large abstract print in soothing colors to promote relaxation there.

Meanwhile, the entryway might display an oversized mirror or colorful abstract painting to make a strong first impression on guests.

Wall art is available in a vast array of sizes, mediums, subjects, colors, and materials. This diversity allows you to select pieces tailored to your taste.

If you want your wall art to truly stand out, limit yourself to 1-2 large pieces per wall. Too many competing items will dilute the visual impact.

Wall Decor Offers Flexible Display Options

Wall decor refers to collections of smaller items artistically arranged on a wall. This includes:

  • Picture frames
  • Tapestry
  • Shelves
  • Wall sculptures
  • Shadow boxes
  • Small mirrors
  • Wall planters
  • Sconces
  • Signs/wall words

The key advantage of wall decor is the capacity for flexible displays. groupings of multiple pieces make it easy to decorate a large area in a cohesive way.

For example, you can cluster a collection of different-sized picture frames to create an eclectic photo gallery on a blank wall similar to acrylic wall decor for modern interiors. Or you might arrange small shadow boxes, planters, and art prints to design a nature-inspired accent wall.

Wall decor lends itself well to the gallery wall idea. This popular decorating technique involves hanging a symmetrically formatted selection of art and frames to form one unified display.

You can give a gallery wall visual rhythm by including pieces in a mix of orientations, sizes, and colors. Or go for a more uniform look with matching frames and color palettes.

Small wall decor pieces are often relatively inexpensive, making DIY projects possible. You can display your own photographs, art prints, or vinyl wall words to add personalized touches.

The flexibility of wall decor allows you to frequently change your display. You can rotate new items in and out seasonally or when you want a fresh look.

Comparing Wall Art vs. Decor by Room

Living Room

The living room is a central gathering place, so it presents a prime opportunity to make a decorating statement. Here, wall art takes the lead.

A large, eye-catching canvas print creates an accent wall that gives the living room an artistic focal point. Angled-leaning art placed on the floor also draws interest.

Wall decor can provide supplementary display areas. For example, use matching picture frames over the sofa or a gallery wall in the entryway.


Both wall art and decor work nicely in the intimacy of a bedroom. Large wall art establishes a restful mood, like an oversized nature photography print.

You can also express personality through a collection of framed art and photos. Cluster meaningful memories or inspirational quotes for a personal gallery wall.

Both wall art and decor work nicely in the intimacy of a bedroom
Both wall art and decor work nicely in the intimacy of a bedroom

Home Office

An office benefits from wall art or decor that boosts productivity. Framed prints depicting outdoor scenery or abstract designs add visual interest without distraction.

A gallery wall with photos, art, and inspiring quotes provides a customizable backdrop for your workspace. Display pieces with significance to motivate and energize.

Dining Room

Use wall decor in the dining area to exhibit pretty plates, botanical prints, or food-inspired art. Coordinate the colors to complement your dishes and table linens like a compact 3 piece wall art set.

Lean a large mirror on one wall to create depth and the illusion of a larger space. Arrange framed photos chronologically down the staircase wall to provide glimpses into family memories.


The kitchen can be an ideal canvas for a family-oriented Wall Art Decor. Designate one area as the photo wall to mount cherished snapshots.

For a whimsical touch, display kitchen tools or framed recipe pages. Shelving adds both storage and surfaces to showcase decorative kitchenware just like handcrafted small wall art pieces for sale.

Key Differences Between Wall Art Vs Wall Decor

CharacteristicWall ArtWall Decor
SizeLarge-scaleSmaller items
PlacementFocal pointEnhances ambiance
Quantity1-2 pieces per wallMany items on a wall
StyleImmediateEvolves gradually
PriceInvestment piecesBudget-friendly
Differences Between Wall Art Vs Wall Decor
Differences Between Wall Art Vs Wall Decor

Frequently Asked Questions

Should I choose wall art or decor for my blank walls?

Focus on wall art if you want to make a strong style statement immediately. Opt for wall decor if you envision gradually layering many pieces over time.

How do I choose wall art and decor for my home?

Select pieces that reflect your taste and personality. Also consider the room’s existing color scheme and furnishings to coordinate.

How much wall space should art take up?

Wall art pieces should occupy about 2/3 of the wall horizontally and 1/2 vertically. Oversized art should take up at least 1/2 the wall.

Should I hang wall art or lean it?

Both work! Leaning larger pieces creates a casual vibe and draws the eye. Hanging provides a polished look and keeps art fully visible.

Map it out symmetrically with similar-sized frames. Add visual interest by interspersing different orientations, heights, colors, andSubject matters.


The choice between wall art versus decor comes down to your goals and room function. Wall art makes a vivid style statement, while wall decor offers more versatility.

For maximum impact, integrate both into your space. Use bold wall art to establish your decorating theme, then layer in wall decor items to highlight your personality.

With an artful arrangement of eye-catching prints and creative decorative displays, you can easily breathe new life into any blank wall in your home.

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