Tracy by Jason Horowitz, above a Ligne Roset sofa and Platner table in Hughes' living room
Untitled by James Marshall, aka Dalek
A vintage chandelier from Miss Pixie's, near Logan Circle
Untitled by Decoy, on the wall in the guest bathroom-cum-storage room
Pink Wave by Cory Oberndorfer, Bad Girl #3 Souixsee (small canvas) by Peter Dayton and Untitled (tall partition) by Matt Spahr
Hughes' surf sanctuary
When Philippa Hughes went to London last year, she asked Zach Storm to cat-sit—and, if he felt like it, to decorate a wall in her 14th Street apartment. The result: Storm, a local artist, created a burst of colored geometric shapes that dashed across the ceiling of Hughes’ apartment, accented with little pink cotton-candy-like clouds. Hughes returned and loved it.
Storm’s mural is not alone.
A giant hot-pink wave curls in the corner of her home, across from a mural that looks like it belongs on a brick wall outside of her building’s glass doors. “I’m really into street art, and so it’s a kind of way to bring it into my home,” Hughes explains. “I also like the idea of the impermanence of it. On the one hand, it’s painted on so it feels permanent, but I’m not going to live here forever; I can’t take it with me, so there’s this sense of impermanence about it, and I like that.”
But the multiple murals adorning Hughes’ walls are just one way the warm, petite former lobbyist and lawyer displays her unique brand of art appreciation sans pretension. Several years ago, she resolved to make the local art scene more welcoming to would-be collectors, so she began posting about various art shows and exhibits on her blog, thepinklineproject.com. Within a year, the hobby became her livelihood. A one-stop shop for anyone looking to discuss, contribute to or immerse themselves in the DC art community, the site is a leading resource for exhibits, talks and workshops, among many other art-inspired events.
Hughes came upon one of her most prized pieces, “Silent Flurry,” at The Curator’s Office in Logan Circle, a gallery favorite of hers for finds. “The couple in there are the artists,” she says, pointing to a photograph of a woman blowing a large cloud of powder into a man’s face. “They do this whole series of photographs about the absurdity of relationships, so the photograph shows the arch of their relationship.”
When her art collection began to outgrow her apartment, she simply created more space with the help of friend and local artist Patrick McDonough. “I realized I never used this shower, so Patrick came over and kind of built these little racks here for me,” she says, showing off the newfound storage space in her spare bathroom. No doubt, Hughes will always make room in her life for art.