Art, Biglaw, Fabulosity, Gay, Lawyerly Lairs, Real Estate

Lawyerly Lairs: An Associate and an Art Collection

Christopher Boutlier, male model turned interior designer.

Over the long weekend, the Washington Post magazine treated us to a delicious inside look at the gorgeous home of Christopher Boutlier, an interior designer, and his partner, Aaron Flynn — a lawyer. Flynn practices environmental and administrative law in the D.C. office of Hunton & Williams.

Flynn may be a mere associate, but he lives like a partner: he resides in D.C.’s desirable Dupont Circle neighborhood, in an 1,110-square-foot condominium; he has an art collection; and he sleeps with a model. (The fine-featured Boutlier was a model before becoming an interior decorator.)

So just how fabulous is their apartment?

Très fabulous. Spin through the slideshow on the Washington Post website. You’ll see gleaming white moldings, beautifully polished hardwood floors, built-in bookshelves, a separate dining room, and a home office (with walls painted the bold shade of black — it was on a dare).

Even more impressive, however, is the couple’s art collection. It includes 100 pieces, and it’s so large that only a fifth of the collection is on display at any given time. Highlights include a black-and-white Joan Miro lithograph, purchased over a decade ago (for $12,000); original Monet pencil sketches, which Boutlier inherited from his French grandmother; a black-and-gold Baker chest, also inherited from Boutlier’s grand-mère; and a 2005 piece by Kara Walker, whose works grace museum walls. Boutlier explains its significance to him:

Boutlier, who has been openly gay since he was 15, attributes his admiration for [Kara Walker] to their shared feeling of being different. “I think for her, growing up and coming from California to Georgia, all these images and thoughts cascaded through her mind — like, ‘Am I pretty?’ — I think it influenced her work, feeling like an outsider, feeling insecure,” says Boutlier, who experienced similar issues with self-image.

Fret not, dear Christophe; you are very pretty indeed. And your partner Aaron is rather cute too. Given all your blessings — an awesome apartment, amazing artwork, Aaron’s ample income (he’s a seventh-year associate at Hunton) — it’s not surprising that some WaPo readers are jealous. See, e.g., this player-hating comment:

Comrades: Say what? The economy is in the crapper, yet there is time and media space to explore ‘personal space’, ‘bifold doors’, degrees in ‘international corporate finance’, ‘cohesion’, and much more vapid self-congratulatory poppycock. Print this piece as a stand alone broadside, and hand it out along the well-oiled Gulf Coast, just for laughs.

One guesses Bootlikker will spend time, also well oiled with SPF40, at Rehoboth. Yes, the ruling class and their servants live differently from the commoners.

Rehoboth? Sure, it’s closer to D.C., but perhaps too pedestrian for Messieurs Boutlier and Flynn. Might we suggest Provincetown?

P.S. We haven’t seen a young gay lawyer with a life this enviable since Aaron Charney, who sued Sullivan & Cromwell for discrimination, settled, and shortly thereafter bought a $1.5 million apartment (which he shares with his super-cute banker boyfriend).

Art House: For collector and designer Christopher Boutlier, the key is to connect with your surroundings [Washington Post]
Aaron M. Flynn [Hunton & Williams]

Earlier: Lawyerly Lairs: New Million-Dollar Digs for Aaron Charney (And a new boyfriend, too?)

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