Check Out The Inspiring Murals Decorating This Downtown Landmark

Mª del Rosario Castro Díaz Mª del Rosario Castro Díaz

Check Out The Inspiring Murals Decorating This Downtown Landmark

Have you seen the gorgeous murals decorating St. John’s Church and Ashburton House yet?

If you’ve walked past St. John’s Church on Lafayette Square Park lately, you probably may have noticed the boarded-up windows of Ashburton House, the building adjacent to St. John’s. Covered earlier last summer to protect its stained-glass windows from damage, Ashburton has since received a major glow up thanks to local artists who decorated the lower row of plywood panels with stunning works of art.

The colorful and inspiring murals were painted back in September of 2020 by local artist with the help of the P.A.I.N.T.S Institute and  St. John’s Church to help bring light and hope to the downtown landmark, which had been central to the 2020 protests.  The stunning works of art were created as part of a major effort that has since continued to embellish the District with messages of hope, unity and racial justice.

The Ashburton murals reflect on the urgent need for dialogue and racial justice, showcasing the power of art as a form of activism — a theme that was central to P.A.I.N.T.S’ exhibit Murals that Matter held earlier in the summer at the Smithsonian’s National Building Museum.

While the area is currently fenced up, Washingtonians can still take a peek at The St. John’s Church and Ashburton House plywood murals.

If you’re on the hunt for more inspiring public art, P.A.I.N.T.S has continued to collaborate with a number of different artists all throughout the city and you can still find some of their work in places like Chinatown and the Mount Vernon Triangle where you’ll find their latest piece — a mural honoring the late Martin Luther King Jr.


Earlier in January, the non-profit worked with artists Shawn Perkins, Levi Robinson and Dez Zambrano, to create the bright and colorful work of art. The commemorative piece, which was installed on January 18 in honor of Martin Luther King Day, celebrates Community, Arts and Education, and also features notable DC figures like Mayor Muriel Bowser and Vice President Kamala Harris among others.

“The mural, entitled ‘Voices for Change – Representation, Progress & Hope’, intends to unite and rally all Americans to work toward peaceful, positive change,” explained P.A.I.N.T.S Institute on an Instagram post. 

And if you’re wondering what will happen once the boards come back, well, the good news is we’ll be able to enjoy them for as long as we want, because all these murals will be conserved by P.A.I.N.T.S and the Smithsonian for the future!

See also: The Black Lives Matter Movement Has Been Nominated For The 2021 Nobel Peace Prize

[Featured image: Instagram / @ivans_in_danger]

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