Lacuna, home of GERTRUDE’S new office
Otis D Gibson's GERTRUDE, a global
innovation advertising and marketing agency,
has settled into its new unique space in
Lacuna Artists Lofts, joining a large
community of more than 150 creative
businesses in the 250,000-sq. ft. block-
long building at 2150 S. Canalport, in Pilsen.
And by unique, consider: GERTRUDE's 7,500
sq. ft. office is located in what originally
had been the loading dock in what once was one the world's largest macaroni
factory built in the early 1900s. The previous tenant in their space had been the
building's skate park.
The six-story building has exposed brick walls, timber wood style beams, hardwood
floors, high ceilings and a rooftop deck with stunning panoramic views of the city.
After occupying a comparably-sized space in River North, the Chicago office's
permanent staff of 24 moved to Lacuna earlier this year. The reason for the move
was "a need for a more creative atmosphere, since creativity is what drives us,"
says Gibson, GERTRUDE'S founder/CEO and CCO. "It's more functional for us to be
Gibson and the building's designer, David Nanni, created the space. When it's
completed in September, it will be a "mid-century modern steampunk innovation
gallery space, 100% collaborative, that's meant to showcase our work and how we
think," Gibson says. The agency's clients include Microsoft, Nokia, Singha Beer, L.A.
Gear and Asia Pacific Breweries.
Other recent expansion moves: GERTRUDE launched Oz Manufacturing Co.
as a separate design, innovation and digital branding division, specializing in
corporate identity, brand management and branded environments.
In March, Heather Knapp, who has been with the agency for its entire nine years of
business, was named president, heading operations and account management. She
had been GERTRUDE'S managing director.
Her extensive background includes advertising, brand positioning and brand identity,
new product launch, digital, social media, public relations, retail, direct mail, trade
programming, experiential, and consumer promotion.
Building manager Joey Cacciatore, son of the owner, Joseph Cacciatore, a major real
estate developer, took over the building in 2009 and spent two years converting it
into his vision of a space for artists and related tenants.
Cacciatore says there's nothing else like Lacuna in the city.