How to Ship a Sculpture

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How to Ship a Sculpture

If you have a sculpture and want to remove it, then you have to prepare it for shipping and pack it properly. Sculpture is heavy and it is likely to shift inside of a box, that’s why, you have to think over packing. If the package is dropped, the artwork is likely to push past the packaging materials and impact the ground almost directly. So, you will NOT:
1) Pack an unprotected sculpture in loose shipping noodles, foam, or newspaper.
2) Use a box that is barely larger than the artwork itself.

Shipping Small Sculptures (150 pounds or less):
1) First, you have to wrap the artwork in something soft that will not scratch the surface or patina of the artwork. Then you should wrap the artwork in bubble wrap or other soft padding. Moreover, build a nice cushion all the way around the art, especially on corners.
2)  In order to create a stronger buffer against shock, place the bundled sculpture inside a box or use cardboard or some other heavy material. The fit should be snug, so use bubble wrap to fill holes as necessary.
3) It is important to place the bundled artwork inside another large box that has plenty of non-shifting, well-padded packing, especially in the corners. Use newspaper here if wadded up tightly. You may also fill small plastic bags with pellets instead of those annoying loose foam pellets and then close and pack the bags in tightly.

You should remember that this works for solid, one-piece bronze and stone sculptures and it may also work for bronze sculptures with a slab (of stone or wood) for a base. But make sure that the screws that attach the base to the artwork are snug (do not tighten too much or you may crack the stone slab).

Shipping Large Sculpture Works (over 150 pounds, but not monumental)
As a rule, all larger sculptures are crated. Despite it is expensive to use a wood box, but it will secure the larger works better. And very often you will see solid wood supports being screwed into the insides of the crate - specifically made to fit around each artwork. These support bars are needed to place around the sculpture. They help the sculpture to stay in place no matter how the crate is oriented.

If you are in doubt about shipping art, then you can contact a professional shipper that works with fine art and he will help you with this. Don’t be afraid to ask questions about how your art will be packed, transported, and insured.