At Tether we were invited to participate in an AIGA Design Festival in Seattle. Design firms throughout Seattle were given a sonotube as a blank canvas to create their own DesignMarks. We chose Pioneer Square, where Tether is located, as the historic city center to tell our story through these Tether-designed posters.
As Pioneer Square is the birthplace of Seattle, it has a rich history, from the early settlers who skidded the timber down the hills to the water (the birth of the term, Skid Row), to the Chinese, then the Irish, then the Germans that came to the area to trade and work. The designers at Tether chose to create posters from true stories that represented the years of Pioneer Square's history.
Seattle grunge: A reminder that grunge started in Seattle in the heart of Pioneer Square.
James Moody: Popular jazz joint "The Black & Tan" on Jackson Street, 1950s
Totem Fire: In 1938, someone stuffed newspaper into the mouth of a Totem Pole in Pioneer Square. The assailant was never captured. This poster is a notice asking for information leading to the arsonist's arrest.
Bruce Lee: 1960s. Bruce Lee invites you to a martial arts demonstration. Challenge the Master!
Madame Lou's Lonesome Ball: In the 1890s Madame Lou Graham ran the best brothel on this side of town. Hosting the wildest parties with Seattle's top politicians, the space still stands today as a men's outreach mission.
Running of the Wild Rainiers: A flyer for the Running of the Wild Rainiers, an advertising stunt in the spirit of the running of the bulls. Over 10,000 people showed up to run through the streets of Pioneer Square with oversized beer bottles to participate in the event.
Women workers: 1942-1944: U.S. Propaganda posters from WWII encouraging women to join in the war effort.
Shanghaied: In the early 1900s young men looking for work in the Pacific Northwest were often kidnapped and enslaved on ships destined for the far east—a practice commonly referred to as being "Shanghaied." The legendary story of Henry Short begins at the still-standing Merchants Cafe and ends someplace out at sea.
We want beer: Prohibition protest march, 1922, Bootleggers Convention.
Bird Lady: 1980: Based on low budget "ditto" flyers. Geraldine Peterson, aka "The Bird Lady," was just one of the many (often unspoken) personalities that make Occidental Park, in Pioneer Square, what it is.
American Messenger: In 1907 an enterprising 19-year-old, James E. ("Jim") Casey, borrowed $100 from a friend and established the American Messenger Company in Seattle, later to be called UPS.
Logging workers: Henry Yesler opens his steam-powered sawmill in 1852 and looks for employees to help with logging efforts.
Thriller Flash Mob: A dancing zombie loses her camera after participating in the Thriller Dance in Occidental Park in 2009.
Not Guilty, Seattle Fire: After the 1883 Seattle Fire, a misprint falsely blamed Jimmie McGough for starting the fire in his cabinet shop, an error that was reprinted in newspapers all over town. This poster is attempt to clear McGough's name once and for all.
Artwalk: In the 80s, Pioneer Square was known (and still is) as the Art Gallery District of Seattle. It was the site of the first "First Thursday Art Walk," now adapted by various cities throughout the nation.