The creatives over at Wieden+Kennedy want you to know that they are not just commercial shills. No, they are special artistic flowers—which, after all, is how they were selected in the first place to work at one of the most competitively sought after advertising firms in the world. And after they're done breaking their asses for the man all day, they go home and make their own art, "to make ourselves sane and keep true to our heart's definition of art," explains Wieden designer Katie McHugh, who founded the annual WE MAKE art show three years ago to showcase what her colleagues can do.
"This year it is nine artists with pottery, paintings, photography, sculpture, portraits, visual/performance art and more."—some names that might ring bells are Tyler Riewer, Mark Shepherd, and Chris Lael Larson—"And free booze. Of course. Every artist is insane for juggling the hours at WK and still finding the time and pleasure in going home and making more art. We want this show to have no expiration and to support other artists who need this." WK artists are, of course, the lucky ones, and the majority of artists in town probably "need" a little more of what they're having (paychecks). To that end, the annual opening party (free booze!) is also a potential networking/judgmental self-comparison opportunity (First Thursday Nov 1 at the Cleaners). And if you find "people who work at Wieden+Kennedy" to be a bit irksome as a theme for an art show, McHugh hints that the show may expand next year to include artists from beyond the walls of their offices. "We had so many requests this year to be a part of it we will have to discuss changing our venue next year," she says.