When your upbringing is rooted in creativity, generosity, and community, it is no surprise that those characteristics would be evident in all you do as you grow. Mazie Cook is an artist/art administrator raised by local, popular artist Trahern “Easel Cathedral” Cook and storyteller/educator/community builder, Lori Cook. And alongside her brother, Walt, a filmmaker, the family has worked as Studio Campfire, a collective of creatives.
As any entrepreneur may tell you, it all starts with a problem. They run into a situation where they need or want something unavailable, so they create it. That is precisely what Mazie did. While Mazie was attending the University of South Carolina in Columbia as a studio art major, she would have access to studio space most of the time. But at the exact wrong times, when she needed to work, the studio space was closed due to another class or school holiday. This problem sparked the idea for Mazie that there needed to be someplace specifically for artists to work and fellowship that was convenient and affordable. With her experience as an artist’s manager and coming from her close family of creatives, Mazie was made to be the founder of Columbia’s co-working space for artists, NoMa Warehouse.
With Beth Lawson as Executive Director, Cara Lawson as Finance Director, and Mazie as Creative Director, at a little over a year old, NoMa Warehouse has offered the community a cooperative opportunity to celebrate not only visual art, but also music, dance, and so much more. It is cool to note that Beth and Cara are Mazie’s in-laws and that Mazie has done all of this community building while having two kiddos of her own under two years old.
As Trahern’s Artist Manager for years now, Mazie helps her dad stay on top of bookings and paperwork, allowing him the freedom to “just paint.” And as an artist, Mazie understands the challenges emerging artists face from both sides of the easel. That is why she was able to create a solution that addressed the real issues of workspace, affordability, and a place in which the community may simultaneously see art and show artists support.
So here is the rundown on NoMa Warehouse: Artists, Creatives, and the Community are welcome to use NoMa Warehouse’s workspace for FREE during normal operating hours. Memberships are available if storage or additional hours of access are desired. Also, NoMa Warehouse encourages working with individuals and groups to bring experiences and art under their roof. Mazie wants you to call/email her to share your ideas and ways of filling NoMa Warehouse with life and light. Here are the contact details: NoMa WarehouseInstagramFacebook
Every Friday is The NoMa Flea from 6 pm to 9 pm. There you can shop for art, clothing, and all the things. Coming up next weekend, on May 15th, is Thread Affair, a vintage clothing market. So go and support in all the ways to keep this generous and meaningful venture going strong.