Notes from the Underground
The woman behind the city’s hottest pop-up market.
You might recognize Marz from the new mural painted above Plymouth Pillars Park, overlooking I-5 between Pike and Pine: She’s gazing up at the sky from underneath a red umbrella, face framed with wavy, long locks and black-rimmed glasses. The mural, painted by Derek Wu in collaboration with the Northwest School, stretches out into a gold flourish of honeycomb and bumbling honeybees.
The beatific portrait is a fitting addition to the neighborhood. Marz is a familiar face around town, known for her line of contemporary and vintage clothing called TWINSISTR. (She’s an identical twin.) Marz also styles photo shoots for up-and-coming photographers such as Lauren Max and Frank Correa. Most recently, she founded the ArtAche Market, which takes place at Capitol Hill’s Vermillion Art Gallery and Bar on the first Sunday of every month.
ArtAche started popping up at Vermillion in September 2011. Its 22 vendors—mostly young or undiscovered local artisans, designers and vintage collectors—are handpicked by Marz, who conceived the market with Vermillion owner Diana Adams as a way to nurture a community of emerging Northwest artists.
“It’s my goal to bring together stuff that’s commercially underrepresented—to marry art, the underground and commerce,” Marz says.
Like a brick-and-mortar Etsy plunked into an art gallery, ArtAche temporarily transforms the white-cube part of Vermillion into a moveable feast of small objects and clothing racks. The mood is casual and bubbly, with Vermillion offering $3 mimosas and $5 beer-and-a-shot combos all day. A DJ provides atmosphere at a toned-down volume during the day, but stick around ’til evening and dancing is bound to break out.
We’re living in a golden era of pop-up markets and Seattle has plenty: classics like the bi-annual Punk Rock Flea Market, newer markets like Century Ballroom’s Indoor Flea Market, Kaleidoscope Vision, the bi-weekly Hangover Flea Market at the Comet and Belltown’s Object, which started as a pop-up before becoming a full-time store.
Marz’s keen curatorial aesthetic and catching effervescence make ArtAche stand out as a pop-up destination. Each month, Marz draws together iconic local fashionistas, like Secret Shoppe duo Julianna Vezzetti and Meghann Sommer, who have been selling hand-picked vintage items since the first ArtAche. At the market you’ll also find dresses constructed from colorful Jaipur cottons and vintage sari silks ($120–$170, Lekkerlife), quartz-cluster bracelets ($55–65, by &c.) and shoulder dusters woven from vintage chains and peppered with agate and onyx ($60–75, by &c.) Vintage trailblazer Amy Hixon also sells hand-picked items from the 1950s to the 1990s that run the gamut from grunge to boho to acid rock under the name Fallon’s Closet.
“Hixon is Seattle’s original thrifting queen,” says Marz. “She’s one of the original employees under the old ownership of Atlas Clothing when it was on Broadway, and she helped cultivate the scenester clothing look of the late ’90s/early ’00s on Capitol Hill.”
Marz makes a point to include in ArtAche visual artists who produce fine-art-inspired goods, too—like Izzie Klingels’ screen-printed LES YEUX d’EXTASE shirts and totes, Ollie Glatzer’s limited-edition T-shirts printed with ethereal geometries and Shellee Miggins’ humming neon sculptures, scaled down to centerpiece-size.
ArtAche mirrors Marz’s love for quirky-but-cool vintage pastiche and fine art. “I’ve been called a style chameleon before,” she says. “People don’t recognize me on the street sometimes because my outfits vary so much.”
No matter what the outfit du jour, Marz wears her heart on her sleeve, and her love for art is contagious.
The ArtAche Market takes place at Capitol Hill’s Vermillion Art Gallery and Bar on the first Sunday of every month. Photo of Marz at Vermillion by Dylan Priest.