The Street Art of Hub116

Vincent Flaska is a local Chicagoan through and through. He grew up in the west suburbs and moved into the downtown area five years ago. His family's businesses are based out of Chicago too. Over the years, they've acquired real estate and developed what is known today as Hoist Liftruck, where they manufacture forklifts. Having such close ties with this city, it makes sense that Flaska wanted to find a way to support local companies.

Hub116 started out as a small spark of inspiration. While his family rented a shared workspace, he noticed that the amount they spent on rent didn’t make sense for their business. The 116 W. Hubbard building had been under foreclosure for seven years. With their original plight in the back of his head, Flaska created Hub116 to utilize the building for shared space leasing for other growing businesses.

Flaska describes his company as a simpler shared space business, “Some workspace companies are offering you the country club of shared spaces with doughnuts and seminars. Hub116 is luxury shared space without the price tag. We’ve stripped down to the essentials of working.”

Creating an ideal environment for work included colorful, modern artwork. Flaska chose photographs of street art by Banksy, Hebru Brantley, Ben Eine, and, his personal favorite artist, Eduardo Kobra. Some of the photos were taken by his friends in Chicago, while some were collected by Flaska himself while studying street art abroad in Prague. “We’re trying to attract a younger generation into our shared space offices. I chose graffiti because it’s a different style and because of what it stands for; it’s impressive what these artists can do with the city as their canvas.”

The largest art piece printed is 70" x 50" compared to the smallest which measures 20" x 30". Each print was float mounted to give a clean, modern look that goes with the industrial feel of the building. Flaska sought a company that could print and mount large sizes and when he found Artmill, the choice was easy, “It was important that we went with a business in Chicago. Artmill provided great communication, timely responses, and delivered on time.”