Merry Renk in Memory Memorial

Shipping Planning vs. Sh*t Happening

Shipping starts when you're making your work! Sound confusing? Perhaps, but this is the voice of experience. 

This is the first in a series of posts about shipping. This will include some PowerPoints with audio from the SNAG Professional Development Seminar, handouts, essential tips and tricks for shipping, and documents in the Professional Guidelines including the Condition Report & Claims for Damaged Work.

BoxesTAPEcovers imagesIf you want your art or craft to travel across the state or across the country or around the world, start planning for safe shipping during construction. This is especially important if there are large or heavy elements combined with delicate components.


Kim Cridlers culptureIt isn't just my opinion. During Kim Cridler's lecture about SHIPPING LARGE SCULPTURE at the Professional Development Seminar at the SNAG Conference, she showed images of the disassembly of her sculpture prior to shipping.



Kim Cridler SMALL parts in bags for shippingThe small floral elements come off the sculpture and ship separately in small bags. When the sculpture arrives at an exhibition destination, the small elements are reattached. Planning during construction prevents the larger heavy sculpture from damaging the fragile elements.

Below is an example from my work. You will see how the work was designed to disassemble and how the custom-made shipping box is designed to ensure safe shipping.

WomanizerFULL72This appliance from 1982 is titled Womanizer, Kitchen Queen. The base is very heavy construction from brass and copper (yes, I made it to look like a real appliance)  but the plastic container and crown are very lightweight and delicate.



Womanizercrown72The Crown would likely be dented and broken if it was shipped with the heavy base. The entire sculpture was designed to assemble on-site and ship in a custom-made shipping box.


IMG_8048In the left photo, you can see the base being removed from the box.




IMG_8051The crown ships in a separate smaller box to provide protection from the heavy base.




IMG_8058To the left,  the crown is being lifted carefully from the custom-made shipping box.

In the SlideShare presentation below, you can see how this sculpture was designed for shipping, and how the custom-made shipping box protects the artwork.

Custom Shipping Box /Design Your Work for Shipping by Harriete Estel Berman

Stay tuned for more posts in this series. Lots of valuable information for shipping your art and craft safely and securely.

This post was updated on April 2, 2022, to provide current links.