Subscribe to Fig Weekly

Fig Weekly is your digital guide to all things Lehigh Valley. Every Thursday, you’ll receive fresh content including local stories, special features, upcoming events, and city insights, delivered directly to your inbox.

Suggest an Event

The online Fig calendar is a curated list of community and advertiser events happening in the Lehigh Valley.

  • Contact Us

  • Search

    #WomensWork Feature: Kate Hughes

    Written by Kate Racculia


    Bethlehem House Gallery challenges the typical white-walled galleries by displaying art in a comfortable and welcoming setting—their motto is “home is where the art is”—and focusing on local artists. It’s a spirit guided by Gallery co-director Kate Hughes: a deeply creative person and professional in the arts who continually challenges herself. She recently told a friend, “In 2018, I’m going to write a book, exhibit my photography in Philadelphia, write and produce a play, and create a comedic sitcom. I need to try, even though I have no idea what I’m doing.” To which her friend responded, “When has that ever stopped you before?”


    In addition to serving as co-director of the Gallery, Hughes is a photographer, playwright and radio personality on WXLV. She joined Bethlehem House Gallery “through a series of incredible synchronicities,” though she has a degree in Art and Fine Arts and has wanted to be involved in the arts “probably since I took my first breath.”


    She’s also a passionate advocate for women. She sees women leading in Bethlehem “every day”—business women, mothers, artists, and friends, working collaboratively to create our town. For the past ten years Hughes has been involved with V-Day, a global organization dedicated to ending violence against women and children. Through theatrical productions and book collaborations, her efforts help raise money for local women’s shelters. “The women, men and children I’ve worked with through V-Day have inspired me in such a way that it is difficult,” she says, “to put it into words.”


    “Ever since I can remember,” says Hughes, “it has always been important for me to be strong. As a little girl, I used to move large furniture around in my house, just to demonstrate my strength. I’m still like that in the gallery—typically, I insist on moving mostly all of the furniture around just to sort of prove that I can.” Hughes advises being strong in mind and spirit as well as body. “If there is something that you want, deserve, or need, ask,” she advises. “Waste no time in doing so.”