Denise Hughes
Denise HughesArtist

Who Am I?

Born March 19, 1971 in Charlotte, NC, I began designing and drawing at an early age with limited resources.  I initially attended East Tennessee State University to study Medical Illustration but found my love of medicine was no comparison to my love of art.  Then a brief stint in Europe opened me up to new opportunities and career paths.  I transferred to East Carolina University where I was able to concentrate my energies into a variety of media and subject matter.  After graduation with a Fine Arts Degree in 1995, I moved to Raleigh and began an apprenticeship with Susan Warlick of Artifects for 8 years.  Here I learned the techniques of decorative art and mural painting, then opened up my own studio in 2001.

I have created murals throughout homes and businesses in the Triangle including Marbles Kids Museum, historic churches, Pediatric offices and numerous Wake Med Hospital facilities.

I also work on canvas in my home studio painting portraits and landscapes.  These works rely heavily upon personal photos. An avid traveler and photographer, I grab any chance possible to seize the beauty of a place be it new, old or ancient. Everyday has a different story to tell.

My newest venture is creating large pieces of art made up of plastic bottle caps and other discarded plastic.  The response has been overwhelming not only as a sustainable form of art but in raising awareness to the communities that surround us.

Denise Hughes


1989-2003 Studied Medical Illustration at East Tennessee State University
1995 BFA (Painting) East Carolina University, Greenville, NC


1995 Award of Distinction in Painting, East Carolina University


2014 Walter Magazine, Raleigh, Artist Spotlight
2001/2002 NC Design Magazine Cover
2002 Wake Med Foundation Magazine


2003-present Muralist and Project Director – Denise Hughes Studio
1995-2003 Muralist/Decorative Painter – Artifects, Raleigh NC


2005 Cary Visual Arts, Cary, NC
2006 Renaissance Renovations, Raleigh NC
2012 City Gate, Raleigh NC
2014 Trinity Gallery, Raleigh NC
2014 Hereghty, Raleigh NC
2015 Common Goods, Visual Art Exchange, Raleigh NC
2015 Cameron Gallery, Durham, NC


2003-present WAKE MED HOSPITALS 20ft x 20ft murals in Radiology rooms of Wake Med Hospitals including Wake Med main campus, North, Cary, Garner, Apex, and Brier Creek
MARBLES KIDS MUSEUM Various murals of all shapes and sizes (10 in total) throughout the museum including 15ft x 30ft “Under the Sea” Mural, 15ft x 30ft “On the Farm” Mural, and a 30ft x 30ft “Octopus” grounding the Play Pirate Ship
GRAYSTONE RECREATIONAL CENTER A 3000 sq. ft mural depicting various scenes of NC
OBERLIN ROAD PEDIATRICS Various murals (9 in total) painted in the exam rooms, measuring room and hallways
CAMERON VILLAGE “Between” outdoor mural for storefront


2013 ANIJA SCHOOL, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC Three 20ft x 8ft murals on the exterior of the school using local materials and working together with the community
2014 HEALING CEILINGS Four Ceiling Tiles painted in aid of cancer patients for
2015 SEAL SITTERS Plastic cap Seal created for auction to aid in Seattle, WA


  • SAS Institute, Cary NC
  • Rocky Mt, NC Municipality Building
  • Mr. N. Smith, Drinkstone House, Drinkstone, England
  • Mr. and Mrs. C. Widmayer, Raleigh NC
  • Mr. and Mrs. Ian Maple, Edenbridge, Kent, England
  • First Citizens Bank
    • Drakes Branch, VA
    • Enka, NC
    • Chatham, VA
    • Emporia, VA
    • South Hill, VA