Waukesha could be seeing a lot more guitars in the area. Gibson Guitars has named Waukesha a GuitarTown, which will bring 10 10-foot-tall fiberglass Les Paul model guitars and 10 regular-sized guitars, according to Waukesha Mayor Jeff Scrima.
From a news release from Scrima:
Waukesha is proud to announce that Gibson Guitar has chosen the birth and resting place of guitar legend Les Paul for its acclaimed GuitarTown public arts project. GuitarTown Waukesha will feature 10-foot-tall fiberglass Gibson Les Paul model guitars, and a series of regular-size guitars, to be artistically designed by local and nationally acclaimed visual artists and displayed in front of the city’s landmarks and businesses. Each guitar sculpture will celebrate a musician, personality or artist unique to the region’s history, with guitar sculptures sponsored by local businesses or individuals.
“We’re delighted to bring the Gibson GuitarTown project to the birthplace of Les Paul,” said Henry Juszkiewicz, chairman and CEO of Gibson Guitars.
The locations for the guitars has not yet been established, according to Scrima.
“We have a local steering committee that will giving direction to the project,” Scrima said. “We want the project to be as collaborative as possible. We are going to take input from everyone in the community.”
The steering committee includes:
- Ty Taylor – Waukesha State Bank president
- Rick Congdon – Attorney and former judge
- Norm Bruce – Business Improvement District president
- Lynn Gaffey – Director of West End Artists
- Steve Kassens – Board of Public Works
- Charles Lichtie – Public Art Committee, former alderman
- Jeff Scrima - Mayor
The launch of the project is scheduled for June 1, according to the news release, which corresponds with the opening date for the Freeman Friday Night Live weekly summer music event in downtown Waukesha.
Scrima said local artist and developer Jeff Seymour brought other GuitarTown communities to his attention, so the mayor reached out to Juszkiewicz.
Other GuitarTowns include:
- Los Angeles
“Thankfully Mr. Juszkiewicz said ‘Yes’ to Waukesha,” Scrima said. “Based upon the other GuitarTown cities, this is truly a privilege for Waukesha.”
And how will it be paid for?
“This is a non-taxpayer funded community-based collaborative project,” Scrima said. “A number of the guitars will be provided from Gibson. We will also locally … look for sponsors for guitars as well.”