Collectors at Busboys & Poets – paying rent with art


Philippa Hughes put on one of her Pink Line Project art-evangelist events at Bus Boys and Poets. Which is interesting to me because I see myself putting on events in the future in my own restaurant/hangout that revolve around technology-evangelizing. Or evangelizing smart women in technology. Well, maybe evangelizing isn’t quite my style. I’m more snarky than mouthpiece. But the event part is still key.

I keep forgetting that the camera records slightly outside the view of the tiny screen on the camera. Damn lights in the background. At least I didn’t get the light stripes down the middle of my face.

Philippa talked about collecting art with Darryl Atwell, an artist colleague of hers. Well, actually Darryl is an anesthesiologist by trade. But he also cofounded CAS51, a group of young art collectors. He said that his social life revolved around art. Isn’t that what art is for anyway? Sure, some people make a living creating art, but the general public can relate to a conversation piece that brings focus to what people’s lives are about.

I wasn’t so much interested in focusing on Philippa, a lawyer by education, as an art collector as I was interested in her creative idea for a business. She’s the founder of the Pink Line Project, a company that brings artists and the general public together.

The best part was when Philippa told a story about how a friend of a relative of a friend came to stay at her place during the 2009 inauguration. It wasn’t even a planned part of the discussion. An audience member just asked for a story. The story was so chic-Washington, I thought it best represented how I view the city and that it gave the flavor of what SmartWomen Event News is all about.

The art on display at Busboys and Poets was an exhibit called “Furious Dancing,” curated by Sim&Son, a collaboration between Simone Jacobson and Sonja Kubota. Simone and Sonja told us about the art pieces around the room. I mentioned that I was working on a project to portray smart women, so Simone invited me to attend a monthly smart women’s lunch.

Andy Shallal, the owner of Busboys and Poets – however he has given himself the job title of ‘artist’ – talked about how art is the central theme of his restaurant/hangout and the events that are held there. He specifically mentioned the recent book signing by Alice Walker, author of “Hard Times Require Furious Dancing,” for whom the art exhibit was designed.

I asked Philippa about the art salons she holds in her living room. Which was also interesting to me because I thought it would be a good idea to start small events at my home, but I wasn’t sure if that would work. I’m a mile away from the farthest metro station out in the suburbs and I thought that people who might not know me very well would feel uncomfortable coming to my home instead of a restaurant.

Of course, with me living out in soccermom suburbs, my lifestyle experiences are a little different, but I have the opportunity to participate in Washington intellectual life frequently since I’m just a half hour train ride away.

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1 Response to Collectors at Busboys & Poets – paying rent with art

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