In The Style Of
Meet Katie Ukrop, founder and director at the hospitable Quirk Gallery in Richmond Virginia. A lover of art and diet coke, Katie takes some time to tell us about her style and what inspires her.
What does style mean to you?
Style really does make me happy. I love all of the little details… pearl buttons, crisp white shirts, real wool sweaters. I’m very drawn to classic style, but love all of the modern twists.
What’s on your coffee table?
I’m crazy about Nathalie Lete and her imaginative artwork. A sweet friend of mine recently gave me her gorgeous book, Beloved Toys. It is a real treasure filled with illustrations of toys that gave comfort during isolating times of the covid pandemic. Doesn’t hurt that the cover is a beautiful pale pink with gold embossing.
What’s hanging on your wall?
Lots and Lots of art. My walls are filled with art from dear friends that Quirk Gallery has been fortunate to work with over the years.
What can’t you live without?
And my family - husband Ted, daughters Emma and Flora, and furry friends George and Jane.
What could you do without?
Negative energy. I think we all need to support each other. Fortunately, I am lucky enough to be surrounded with friends that do just that.
Why did you open Quirk Gallery ?
Having always felt intimidated when walking into art galleries, it felt great to create a welcoming space where Richmonders could comfortably enjoy art exhibitions and get to know their local talent. I love that Quirk has been able to attain this and become a destination for our community.
Any Artists we should check out?
I am crazy about Seth Bauserman. His work is always evolving and full of layers and layers of paper. He is also so kind and a delight to work with. I have also always been obsessed with Elizabeth Graeber. Her drawings and paintings are so whimsical and full of joy. Oh, my. I could go on and on... my friends Scott Csoke, Diego Sanchez, Mary Scurlock. I am so lucky to work with such wonderful people with so much talent.
What's your favorite place in Richmond?
The fan. I just adore my neighborhood! We have lived in the fan for over 25 years and it is the place I feel most at home. The fan is filled with wonderful historic town homes and eclectic neighbors. I especially love walking to and being a regular at Joe's Inn. Sweetest staff and the best eggs over medium. It is my family's idea of a "home cooked" meal. It is also the best spot on a snow day!
What's the last book you read?
"This Is How It Always Is" by Laurie Frankel. I feel that this is a very important book that should be read by all. It is a beautifully written story based on a true story.
What’s the last song you listened to?
My family and friends are big Caamp groupies. We traveled to Montana to see them play two summers ago. There were 15 of us! Love the silly Otter song!
What’s the last interesting thing you saw?
I am always inspired by new shows in the Quirk Gallery. I’m especially crazy about Jeanie Keys' dreamy work. Her paintings explore the relationship between floral species and their historical significance. “I think about the care and nurturance needed to grow flowers,” Jeanie Keys. The paintings are a feast for the eyes and soul.
Pink. Petal pink, Carnation pink, piglet pink… love “marry me” pink by Benjamin Moore. Quirk is also a big fan of “Love and Happiness” by Benjamin Moore.
I do not consider myself a foodie. But I sure do love a grilled cheese and tomato soup from the Quirk Richmond Lobby Bar.
Being with dear friends and family. Also, love texting my girls on our family group chat.
Favorite piece in your wardrobe?
Always love a good sweater.
What brings you joy?
Gardening. Digging in the dirt always clears my head and sparks my imagination.
What are you wearing?
Jeans and sweater and my magical pink shoes from Frances Valentine.
GET THE LOOK