Dealing With High Value Items During Moving & Renovations

If you are moving to a new apartment, home, or your place of living is going through renovations, odds are your high value items, like fine art, will need to be protected and moved too. These items can be tricky to deal with due to value or fragility. Consider the following for your next steps:



This may sound straight forward, but if you have a lot of items, the more information you have on them the better! Here are some points to include in your list:

Estimated Dimensions, Artist, Title, Date

Information specific to each item is the most important. Some pieces don’t have their information written/attached to them; compiling all the information you have on a list will guarantee it doesn’t get lost. Your piece’s provenance will identify what is what. Providing specific information like dimensions will allow professionals to have a better idea of what they are dealing with. Having this list is also a great reference for you when trying to remember what you have and what was moved.


How much is your piece worth? How much sentimental value does your piece have? This information is good to know to determine how much care you wish to be given to your items.

On Site Location

Where is your piece located in your home? When you have many pieces, often the location can get mixed up. It is helpful to know just where each piece is, especially if it is being professionally handled.


Do your items have insurance? If your artworks are leaving their resting place during moving, damage is a lot more likely to occur. It is important to note if your pieces have insurance just in case.


Professional art handling companies, like A2//Artserve, are expertly trained to deal with your artwork & high value items. Their expertise can be invaluable when safely packing and transporting your work. Oftentimes, professionals will schedule a site visit before anything happens. They will begin compiling a list of their own using the information from your original list. Then, they will begin taking images of your work and making sure all pieces are accounted for in reference to the list.

Example of professionally wrapped artwork.

Come moving day, they will wrap your items with foam and poly to protect them from the elements and transport them to a safe place for temporary storage. They will know how best to organize your work. When it comes time to move back in, they can also put it back exactly where it came from based on their initial reference images.



When big life events are happening like moving or renovating, you will want a safe place to put your high value art & items while you wait to move back in. Art handlers, like Artserve, can move your work to an Art Storage facility, like A2 Art Storage, for a safe and temporary “home away from home”. After your work comes in for temporary storage, your work can be inventoried so that everything is accounted for. Here is another blog post where we dive into inventory and its importance when storing artwork.


Contact us for more information and to start your first steps toward a successful and safe move/renovation for your art and objects!

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A2 is proud to announce our official partnership with Artserve!

So, you may have noticed some changes around here… In June 2023, A2 Art Storage & Services acquired Artserve, and we are proud to announce our partnership! Artserve has been leading the fine art handling business in our Twin Cities community since 1994. Artserve continues to provide a full range of museum-quality services including installation, crating, transportation, framing, and design. We are overjoyed to be able to now provide a full range of services accounting for all of one’s art needs!

It’s business as usual in both of our locations, just with added accessibility to both A2 and Artserve’s services for our customers’ convenience!


As the Twin Cities’ art community continues to grow, we will grow right along with it.


With Love,

A2 // Artserve


Artserve’s Website

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A2 Art Storage Private Units

What makes an object need full climate control storage?

Climate Controlled Storage

Storage facilities that are climate controlled, like A2 Art Storage, control the Relative Humidity and temperatures throughout their facilities. In any region where the elements naturally fluctuate, one’s personal valuables that require special care could be negatively affected.  It is important to consider the needs of your object when finding suitable storage solutions near you.


A2 Art Storage Private Units
Private units at A2 Art Storage and Services

Relative Humidity

Relative Humidity (RH) in any space can fluctuate rapidly based on the natural elements. This can cause stress on objects. If an RH is too low, it can be too dry for objects and embrittle certain materials. Too high of an RH can create mold growth and corrosion of metals due to thick moisture. Maintaining the perfect amount of moisture in the air is vital to the survival of precious items, i.e. fine art.



Temperature fluctuations are most likely to affect the “natural aging” of objects. Cooler temperatures tend to help preserve materials. However, too cold and materials like wax or plastic can freeze and break. Too hot, and those same materials can melt. High temperatures will speed up natural chemical deterioration and in conjunction with RH, can begin natural degradation.

Objects that would benefit from climate controlled storage

When considering climate controlled facilities, like A2, here are some examples of objects that typically benefit from such care.

  • Artserve moving fragile American Flag piece. Photo by Glenn Stubbe, 2012

    Art: Artwork can contract or expand with changes in humidity and temperature.

  • Electronics: If maintained in an unsuitable environment for a long time, electronic devices, i.e. circuiting components, will mold or oxidize.
  • Fabrics or papers: Delicate fabrics or papers can mold in humid environments, while excessive temperatures can cause paper to discolor.
  • Vinyl: The risk of warping increases with varying temperatures, whereas the chance of breaking increases with decreasing temperature.
  • Antique wood or metal items: All metals will oxidize and change color in response to moisture. Wood will expand and contract in response to temperature, making it vulnerable to rot and mold.

Degradation and Signs You Should Consider Protecting Your Art

Art comes in all different shapes and sizes. With this comes a variety of practices for keeping your art safe and protected from the elements. If you don’t know what to look for as signs of degradation, the art could become compromised without even knowing. Here is some classic evidence of degradation and signs you should have a professional look into protection:

Example of a sculpture that may need protection and conservation. Image from B.R. Howard Conservation.


Loss of gloss or color. Chalkiness or peeling. Oftentimes, UV light or a smoky environment can change your piece over time.


Glue discoloration, or paint degradation. Corrosion in metal, sometimes resulting in patina. Decomposition of materials due to climate, odors.

Fiber Arts

A fibers’ color can change due to the dye and age, but sometimes it also changes due to sun and climate. Texture of fibers changing. Crusty, crunchy, or breaking of fibers. Decomposition.

Paper Mediums

Acids and acidic materials (ex. Cardboard) can cause pieces to deteriorate. Discoloration, reddish brown spots. Mold or musty smell. Flaking, crumbling, or breaking of paper fibers.

When considering if your piece is safe from degradation or not, it may be worth considering its options. If you would like to find restoration, look into transportation services and art handlers, like our sister company, Artserve, to transport. Similar to the services we offer at A2, valuable art work requires professional handlers with expertise to handle with the upmost care. Here are some questions you should ask yourself:

Where will your valuable work end up after you’ve successfully restored or protected your work?

How will you ensure its safety after it has found its resting spot?

Storage is a very good option! Temporary storage or not, art storage facilities typically have climate/humidity control and other amenities that will ensure the longevity of life for whatever your piece needs.

If your piece returns home, and you are worried about the conditions your home provides for the piece, consider the aforementioned signs and contact your art handlers for further steps to be taken.