Spokane arts magazine launches

From Garland to Brownes Addition, Union District to Downtown, the Spokane arts scene has a lot to offer, and “Muse and the Mode” is itching to let people know about all of it.

Spokane’s newest arts and culture magazine, “Muse and the Mode,” held a release party for its latest issue last Saturday night. “Gothmas: The Red and Black Ball,” was a classic noir affair right out of the 1920s, featuring bands The Lions Oh My and Mirror Mirror.

Muse, a full-color, bimonthly periodical, includes features on the city’s artists, musicians and fashion designers — all 100 percent local.

“We want our magazine to read like you’re sitting in a coffee shop, telling your friend about a concert you went to,” said co-editor of Muse Sherry Miller.

For them, the emphasis is not on genres and statistics; it’s about getting to know the artists and what they’re about, said Bowie Zoe, co-creator, editor and creative director of Muse.

“Katelyn [Eyford, co-creator] and I were extremely upset that no one covered the Cash-Mob at Glamarita,” Zoe said, referring to the remarkable success story of one of their favorite local businesses.

Glamarita Clothing and Accessories is a clothing shop located in the Garland District that sells 100 percent locally made, one-of-a-kind items. Last March, they were weeks away from closing their doors for good. In a last ditch effort to save the business, they planned a “Cash-Mob,” an event where locals swarm a local business en masse, and flood it with income. And the result?

“Not only did they meet [their goal], they trumped it, “ Zoe said. “And despite contacting every major news outlet in Spokane, no one touched it.”

The event wasn’t attended by a single member of the press. That night, two things became clear for the would-be creators of Muse: that Spokane had a lot of love to show for its arts community and a need for someone to give that community a voice.

And just like that, “Muse and the Mode” was born, dedicated solely toward what’s current in Spokane arts and culture with no news, politics, or sports. The first issue, “Cash-Mob,” was dedicated to giving the Glamarita event the coverage they felt it deserved.

Local distributors of the magazine ran out of copies within the first three days. When Muse redistributed the paper two weeks later, most distributors’ supply didn’t even last a day.

In response, Muse has embraced online methods of publishing. Issues are available online for just $2 an issue. Muse also features built-in support for Layar, an augmented reality application for smartphones, available on the Apple and Android Market. With the app, readers are able to use the cameras on their smartphones to access hyperlinks, extra articles and additional graphics.

While they’ve experienced great success already, the staff at Muse have big dreams for the future, and hope to inspire others in turn.

“We want this to be the magazine that people look at and say, ‘Hey, these are local people doing this,” Miller said. “High school kids and college kids look at these bands, and say, ‘Those are all local kids. I can do this, too.’”

“Muse and the Mode” is currently accepting submissions for art, writing, fashion design and anything else creative and local. If you would like to submit to “Muse and the Mode,” or if you know a local artist who you think should be featured in the next issue, you can contact the editors on the magazine’s website.

Lucas Thayer Staff Writer

Contact Lucas Thayer at lthayer12@my.whitworth.edu