Business owner Samuel Gilbert has set the arts brewing in North Oakland, California. This summer, while awaiting pending permits before opening the New Normal Brewing company, Gilbert forged a connection with the community by inviting the arts in. Instead of choosing to let the building stand vacant before officially opening for business, Gilbert invited local artists to display their work in his space, noting that both beer and art bring people together.
Together with San Francisco's Guerrero Gallery, the future site of New Normal Brewing company hosted 3 art shows for the community, each featuring multiple artists. The shows brought in many future customers. Gilbert sold New Normal beer at each show, and donated the thousands of dollars he made to local nonprofits.
Construction on the New Normal Brewing company began in August 2015, and Gilbert hopes to have an official opening by the end of the year. After his pre-launch success, Gilbert plans to continue to incorporate the arts into New Normal Brewing. He recently told East Bay Express that he is interested in the similarities between visual-art and brewing’s creative processes.
According to East Bay Express, he also noted that, “any brewery has an abundance of ‘wall space,’ both in terms of literal walls on which you can display artwork, as well as the various paraphernalia and swag that are associated with the company’s brand name — bottle labels, tap handles, and so forth. ‘In my case, I want all of those surfaces to be places for artists to showcase their work.’”