Nō Studios
Press Release

NO STUDIOS Completes Rooftop Club Lounge Level, Extending Membership Opportunities for Local Business, Creative Communities

Open house events and activities for the public Saturday, March 16

By - Mar 11th, 2019 11:11 am
Bar. Photo courtesy of No Studios.

Bar. Photo courtesy of No Studios.

MILWAUKEE, WI (March 11, 2019) – NO STUDIOS, a hub for the creative arts in downtown Milwaukee that launched in October 2018, has announced the completion of its rooftop level and Club Lounge, opening up three new membership tiers designed for local businesses, corporations and entrepreneurs. Founded by Oscar-winning filmmaker and Milwaukee native John Ridley (12 Years a Slave, American Crime) and business partner Chris Abele, No Studios is a first-of-its-kind experimental concept bridging arts and entertainment experiences, a networking/social club model and shared workspaces.

The new membership tiers include club, corporate and coworker levels. Tailored for the business community and professionals in creative fields, benefits include access to private event and performance spaces, meeting and conference rooms, and unique opportunities for networking. No Studios provides a way for companies to tap into the arts community by offering an engaging space that inspires creative ideas and expands possibilities.

“We are thrilled to add exciting new capabilities to No Studios, and to offer Milwaukee a new way to socialize with purpose,” said Lisa Caesar, chief operating officer. “With a performance space and place for artists of all kinds to showcase their craft on the first floor, co-working and conference spaces on the second floor, and now a high-end social space for exclusive events and gatherings on the rooftop level, there is complete flexibility in how members can use No Studios.”

Approximately 4,000 square feet, the glass-enclosed rooftop Club Lounge offers unmatched views of the Milwaukee skyline and comfortably seats approximately 100 people. The space features bar and beverage service, a catering staging kitchen and lounge-style seating, making it an ideal spot for socializing, networking and events. An outdoor patio is expected to open later this year.

“As someone who has been enthusiastically involved in Milwaukee’s cultural community for over 20 years, I’ve been excited about this project and John’s vision. With every new tenant and every new development since then, my excitement for what No Studios can do for the community I love only grows,” said Chris Abele. “The Club Lounge is going to blow people away when they see it.”

The robust membership platform, which already includes artist and social levels, provides accessibility and accommodates a wide range of audiences. In addition, No Studios will soon complement its physical location with the launch of a new online community that features a member directory, job board and project planning platform, allowing No Studios members to develop connections across the country, and even around the world.

Fostering a space where all art forms are represented, No Studios has named six ambassador club members from the Milwaukee arts community: Alyson Chavez, Milwaukee Ballet; Mary Chuy, actress and filmmaker; Linda Edelstein, Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra; Maureen Ragalie, Saint Kate Arts Hotel; John Riepenhoff, The Green Gallery; and Della Wells, visual artist.

On Saturday, March 16, No Studios will host an open house 10 a.m.–midnight for the public to see and experience the new Club Level, with a variety of artist-inspired events and activities.

  • Photography exhibition presented by the Coalition of Photographic Arts (CoPA) – Through Our Eyes incorporates 18 works from 14 photographers that move from both powerful black and white photography to stunning color examples of visual storytelling.
  • Music video screenings – No Studios’ state-of-the-art screening room will be activated throughout the day with music videos created by local filmmakers.
  • Performances by Milwaukee Youth Symphony Orchestra (12 p.m. and 6 p.m.)
  • Makers Market (10 a.m.–4 p.m.) – Local makers and vendors will fill the second floor.
  • Tenant Open House – Custom Reality Services will offer opportunities to experience virtual reality. 371 Productions will show trailers for upcoming films.
  • Live music and DJ – Q The Sun and Friends (8:30 p.m.) and DJ Tarik Moody (9:30 p.m.–midnight).
  • Snacks and drinks will be available for purchase all day, with hors d’oeuvres served in the evening.

“In five short months, Milwaukeeans have already made No Studios their own. The space comes alive almost every night of the week with a range of events including film, visual art, book signings, music performances, panel discussions and more,” said Caesar. “I’m energized by the prospect that Milwaukee’s creatives are going to be the ones to shape the story of No Studios, and with the Club Lounge now complete, I hope this community will only continue to grow.”

For a complete schedule of open house activities, membership details and additional information, visit www.nostudios.com.

Save the Date

Furthering No Studios’ goal to ignite meaningful conversations, the organization will present a Social Justice Summit organized in partnership with Marquette University in November, exploring the intersection of art and activism.


Connect with No Studios: follow No Studios on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at @nostudiosmke for news, featured projects and more; join the conversation with #socializewithpurpose; text NOSTUDIOS to 474747 for updates.

Photo Gallery


Founded by Oscar-winning filmmaker and Milwaukee native John Ridley (12 Years a Slave, American Crime) and business partner Chris Abele, No Studios is a hub for the creative arts in Milwaukee, designed to provide a social space dedicated to the creation, curation and presentation of art. No Studios offers long-term and short-term office space for local individuals, organizations and companies in creative fields, and is home to a curated group of tenants including Milwaukee Film, Milwaukee Filmmaker Alliance, 371 Productions, Custom Reality Services, UW-Milwaukee Department of Film, Marquette University, Independent, Media Circus International, Gener8tor, Imagine MKE and Duncan Entertainment. As a for-profit venture that aims to become a sustainable model for bringing arts to Milwaukee, No Studios offers a unique three-tier membership model providing accessibility to a wide variety of audiences. No Studios presents year-round programming including film screenings and discussions, dance and music performances, readings, and photographic and fine art exhibitions. The building is located in the newly redeveloped Pabst Brewery Complex at 1037 West McKinley Avenue. Learn more at www.nostudios.com.

About John Ridley

John Ridley’s critically acclaimed documentary about the Los Angeles uprising, Let It Fall: Los Angeles 1982-1992, premiered in theaters and aired on ABC in 2017 and is now available on Netflix. He recently directed the first episode of the EPIX original series “Godfather of Harlem,” starring and executive produced by Forest Whitaker.

Ridley previously won an Oscar® for writing 12 Years A Slave, he wrote and directed the innovative Jimi Hendrix biopic All Is By My Side, and was the creator, director, and executive producer of ABC’s Emmy-winning series “American Crime.” His limited series “Guerilla,” with Idris Elba, Freida Pinto, and Babou Ceesay, aired in 2017 on Showtime and Sky.

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