January 18 2011
Listen: For our first fresh piece of the year we turn to Brent Gohde, who's batting lead off for our series of tour guides in the Make Milwaukee campaign (funny thing, through the course of the campaign, we'll actually have a full lineup of 9 tour guides). Brent currently works as a storyteller at Fullhouse, freelances for the AV Club, and directs the arts-saturated events operation Cedar Block. And besides his on-paper qualifications, he knows a grip of folks who live and work in Milwaukee's creative community.
As our introductory tour guide, I tasked Brent with answering this introductory question: "What is Milwaukee's creative community?" A difficult and loaded question, for sure. And to add a twist to his challenge, rather than answer in words or an essay or anything like that, Brent answer the question in the form of introductions -- finding people to interview that are in some way representative of themes in Milwaukee's creative community. Yikes!
Fortunately, Brent was more than up for the task. His first introduction was Joe Locher, founder of Yes Men who is currently working on projects in interior design (Ancient Tree Underground) as well as his new project Lyrical. His bio is worth a careful read, but simply put, the man is a world-class creative dynamo who makes his home in Milwaukee.
In this first piece, Joe discusses the experience of working as a creative in Milwaukee:
We talk a bit about his new headquarters in this piece -- at the bottom of this post, find a handful of photos I took while Joe graciously showed us around his place. And as surreal as some of those shots seem, they barely do justice to that space.
You've definitely seen or heard some of Joe's work, especially if you live in Milwaukee. He's worked with a whole slew of Milwaukee companies, including doing design for Alterra and the recent re-design of the Milwaukee Admiral's brand. In this piece, he tells the story of how the "Ghost Admiral" idea came together:
I loved this story because I was wondering about the back story when the new logo was originally rolled out. The way he repurposed the original mascot to create something contemporary, in my mind, is a prime example of Milwaukee's creative brand.
As promised, below are a collection of highlights from the photos I took inside Joe's newly built space in the Pritzlaff building -- just when you thought you know all the cool spots in Milwaukee...