Hanging Paintings: Eye-level means…what?

Often, I hear that I should hang a painting at eye-level. But, how high IS eye-level? If you take eye-level for someone to be the distance from their eyes to the ground, then it seems an easy distance to measure. However, not all people are the same height. Eye-level for someone 6'01" (184.5 cm) will... show more Often, I hear that I should hang a painting at eye-level. But, how high IS eye-level? If you take eye-level for someone to be the distance from their eyes to the ground, then it seems an easy distance to measure. However, not all people are the same height. Eye-level for someone 6'01" (184.5 cm) will be different than for someone 5'04" (162.6 cm). So, I ask again, how high IS eye-level? Is there a generic height that is considered universally to be eye-level?

Also, what part of the painting should be eye-level? The top-third? The middle? The bottom third? Something else?
6 answers 6