The Beerline Trail Neighborhood Development Project hosted this webinar celebrating the Beerline Trail and the Black Landscapes Matter book release on March 30, 2021. Keynote speaker Walter Hood has designed a concept plan for the creation of a Linear Park on the Beerline Trail. Hood, a nationally known landscape architect and artist, engaged with the community and used that input in his design of the Beerline Trail Lifeways Plan, an ambitious vision for this important community asset. Walter Hood is the Creative Director and founder of Hood Design Studio and a MacArthur Fellow. He is co-editor of a recently released collection of essays, “Black Landscapes Matter.” The book includes an essay about the Beerline Trail, written by longtime Beerline Trail project leader Sara Daleiden, director of MKE-LAX. The event featured Darryl Johnson, executive director of Riverworks, who shared Beerline Trail updates and a virtual “walk-through” of the Lifeways Plan. A local panel, including Sara Daleiden, discussed Black landscapes and why they are important for Milwaukee.

University of Virginia Press release book co-edited by Beerline Trail landscape artist and architect Walter Hood, along with Grace Mitchell Tada. Book includes essay about the Beerline Trail in Milwaukee by Sara Daleiden of MKE<->LAX.

The question “Do black landscapes matter?” cuts deep to the core of American history. From the plantations of slavery to contemporary segregated cities, from freedman villages to northern migrations for freedom, the nation’s landscape bears the detritus of diverse origins. Black landscapes matter because they tell the truth. In this vital new collection, acclaimed landscape designer and public artist Walter Hood assembles a group of notable landscape architecture and planning professionals and scholars to probe how race, memory, and meaning intersect in the American landscape.

Essayists examine a variety of U.S. places—ranging from New Orleans and Charlotte to Milwaukee and Detroit—exposing racism endemic in the built environment and acknowledging the widespread erasure of black geographies and cultural landscapes. Through a combination of case studies, critiques, and calls to action, contributors reveal the deficient, normative portrayals of landscape that affect communities of color and question how public design and preservation efforts can support people in these places. In a culture in which historical omissions and specious narratives routinely provoke disinvestment in minority communities, creative solutions by designers, planners, artists, and residents are necessary to activate them in novel ways. Black people have built and shaped the American landscape in ways that can never be fully known. Black Landscapes Matter is a timely and necessary reminder that without recognizing and reconciling these histories and spaces, America’s past and future cannot be understood.

MKE<->LAX Open House 
This Saturday, August 1, 1pm… CST on Zoom!

1-2pm: Conversation around creative work opportunities with Morgan Phelps of Colorful Connections in Milwaukee
2pm…: Free Form Time with MKE<->LAX Director Sara Daleiden! What’s on your heart and mind with your creative practice? What would you like to know about MKE<->LAX initiatives this year (see below)?
Contact us at for Zoom details.

We met Morgan through the Designing Equity initiative that MKE<->LAX collaboratively developed with FreewavesZeidler Group, Greater Together and Milwaukee creative talent to address racial inequities in the creative industries. Colorful Connections is a Milwaukee-based social enterprise that helps underrepresented creative professionals secure promising careers, doing what they love with organizations that are committed to diversity and inclusion. So whether you are seeking work as or have work to offer creative talent, we encourage connecting with Morgan and her team. Morgan would appreciate having you fill out the Job Search and Career Development Survey now, whether you are creative talent based in Milwaukee or Wisconsin, or elsewhere in the U.S, as remote work is possible. Please also consider joining the Colorful Connections mailing list or connecting with them on social media.

2020 MKE<->LAX Initiatives
Designing Equity with Racial Radical
HomeWorks: Bronzeville
Rural Urban Flow
Arts Wisconsin
Beerline Trail Neighborhood Development Project  
Milwaukee Artist Resource Network

Racial Radical: Generating New “Woke” Words focuses on recognizing familiar but so far unnamed racial experiences and generating new vocabulary from those experiences. Co-produced by Freewaves and MKE<->LAX. Featuring Milwaukee artists Dasha Kelly, Fondé Bridges and Mikal Floyd-Pruitt.

Racial Radical: Generating

New “Woke” Words

April – October 2019

Los Angeles, California

Milwaukee, Wisconsin Racial

Radical Collaborators:

Anne Bray, Freewaves

Fondé Bridges, Healthy Words

Sara Daleiden, MKE<->LAX

Mikal Floyd-Pruitt

Taj Frazier

Lanita Jacobs

Dasha Kelly

LaVonna Lewis

David Sloane

Wes Tank, Tankthink

Diversity in the Creative Occupations of Greater Milwaukee: A Labor Analysis

Sara Daleiden of MKE<->LAX served as a key advisor along with other Designing Equity leaders on this recently released Greater Together and University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee Center for Economic Development report.

Milwaukee has been, for decades, one of the most segregated metropolitan areas in the United States, a place where racial inequality is entrenched and pervasive. These disparities are particularly pronounced in the region’s labor market, where racial gaps in employment, earnings, and mobility are among the widest in the nation.

This study, prepared for the Greater Together “designing diversity” initiative, presents the first systematic overview of racial disparities in a part of Milwaukee’s labor market that has attracted increased attention in recent years: occupations in the “creative sector.” After developing a working definition of creative sector occupations, we examine three key questions. First, is employment in creative sector occupations in metro Milwaukee marked by racial disparities and, if so, how wide are those gaps? Specifically, are African Americans and Latinos underrepresented in Milwaukee’s creative occupations, compared to their percentage of the overall metro area labor force? Second, are there differences in the level of racial disparity found in different sub-sectors of creative sector jobs? For example, are persons of color in Milwaukee more or less likely to be underrepresented in jobs as, say, musicians or photographers, as opposed to, say, artists or designers? Finally, the study puts Milwaukee in national perspective. We compare the levels of racial disparity in selected creative occupations in the nation’s 50 largest metropolitan areas, including Milwaukee, by presenting an “index of concentration” that measures the extent to which a given racial group is “underrepresented” or “overrepresented” in a particular occupation, in relation to their share of the metro area’s labor force. As we shall see, although racial disparities in creative occupations are quite evident in Milwaukee, these gaps are not especially out of line with trends in metro areas across the country. Racial disparities in creative sector employment are indeed a common challenge in metropolitan areas across the United States.

HomeWorks: Bronzeville has been a long walk for collaborating artists Vedale Hill of Jazale’s Art Studio, Mikal Floyd-Pruitt of I Am Milwaukee and Sara Daleiden of MKE<->LAX, along with other creatives on their team. They are thrilled to invite you to the free opening of our first artist owned live-work space for Vedale and family:

Saturday, August 10, 2019
2408 N Vel R Phillips Avenue
Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53212

This open house is part of the Bronzeville Art Walk within the City of Milwaukee’s Bronzeville Week. The HomeWorks: Bronzeville team were able to rehabilitate this formerly foreclosed City property in connection with the City’s Art and Resource Community Hub (ARCH) Program and the Bronzeville Cultural and Entertainment District redevelopment initiative. 

They are grateful to the many partners and supporters who have made this transformation possible. 

More information about the collaboration including who the leaders are and their charter:

Please join Los Angeles-based artist Maceo Paisley for a performance and post-dialogue with Milwaukee-based Monica Miller at her art space Facilitating Situations this Saturday night. Sara Daleiden encouraged these two to have an MKE<->LAX exchange and she imagines they will have a rich dialogue!

Dynamite: Movement & Language by Maceo Paisley 
This Saturday, May 25, 7-9pm
Facilitating Situations in Walker’s Point
706 South 5th Street, Milwaukee, WI 53204

Maceo is traveling throughout the US touring his new book, Tao of Maceo. He is also investing time in cities throughout the country, looking to learn about local art scenes and artist-run spaces in particular. Monica will facilitate a discussion with him about his findings, what makes Milwaukee unique in this way, and how he defines “artreprenuership.” 

RSVP as well as see Maceo’s bio and tour description on the Facebook event link.

Light refreshments will be provided
Street parking available after 6pm
$5 suggested donation, all proceeds go back to the artist in support of his travels

Dynamite: Movement & Language by Maceo Paisley is supported in collaboration with MKE<->LAX.

Sara Daleiden has rejoined the Milwaukee Artist Resource Network (MARN) board, following her last cycle from 2012-2014. She is excited to collaborate with board president Mal Montoya and the current board.

Sara has a deep attachment to MARN since being an emerging artist in Milwaukee in the early 2000s when several of her collaborators at the time formed the non-profit. She has benefited from MARN as a network since then and has partnered with MARN on a number of MKE<->LAX initiatives over the ten years since she founded and has been directing the agency. 

Her intention is to collaborate on growing MARN as a network, focused on artists in Milwaukee while also growing an arts market in the region. Sara will focus on strategic partnerships, fundraising, consulting and advocacy with statewide and regional partners. This includes partners such as Milwaukee Arts Board, Wisconsin Arts Board, Arts Wisconsin, Greater Milwaukee Committee, WWBIC, Greater Together, Chicago Artist Coalition, and Imagine MKE, as well as an ever-expanding list of artists and other cultural leaders she values within the region. Sara will seek alignment with MARN and current MKE<->LAX collaborative initiatives like HomeWorks: BronzevilleDesigning Equity and Beerline Trail Neighborhood Development Project.

Sara invites you to join her in celebrating at the upcoming MARN fundraiser. She will be renewing my membership at this event and welcomes having you support MARN along with her in whichever way is comfortable for you!

MARN Community Art Event Invitation
Celebrate Milwaukee artists!

Join us at Lakefront Brewery on Thursday Feb 21 from 5-8 pm
1872 North Commerce Street in the Beerline B neighborhood of Milwaukee, 53212

A mix & mingle fundraiser to benefit MARN programs. Festivities include creation of a public art piece to be donated to local charities. Raffle plus prizes and more. Admission includes refreshments & silent disco.

To purchase tickets:

Artist Alan Nakagawa interviews Sara Daleiden in his Los Angeles living room about her MKE<->LAX practice with civic art, facilitation, public space and other forms of land use engagement for his VISITINGS radio show which airs on dublab.