Behind the page
Creator Spotlight: metahaiku
Amy Mazius and Davy Greenberg, the LA-based founders of metahaiku (think creative-studio meets photo-video production house meets events space that’s also the co-directors’ home) are inspired by sustainable living practices, minimalist design, and the natural world. Their elevated DIY-meets-found treasures aesthetic infuses metahaiku’s motto and informs the couple’s worldview: work less, play more, get your hands dirty.
We sat down with Amy and Davy to talk about what sparks their creativity, what matters to them as founders, and how to get through those staring-at-a-blank-screen jitters.
This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.
Tome: We love the name, metahaiku. It’s mysterious and ethereal, almost dreamy. Can you tell us more about what metahaiku does exactly… or what it is?
Davy Greenberg: It can be so many things, depending on the need. It’s a wood shop, it’s a pop-up, it’s where we do our production work, we’ve hosted yoga classes. metahaiku is just an interesting kind of experiment in community, in creation, and in design.
Amy Mazius: It’s a space where people can come and meet one another in a non-cringey way. They can rent out our space themselves and host a great vegan dinner… it’s whatever people want metahaiku to be. Sometimes it just depends on the day!
Can you tell us where you got the concept for metahaiku? How did it get started?
Amy: We’re very rooted in sustainable practices and are committed to softening our impact on the environment in everything we do. I first got into sustainability as a little kid, just thrifting used clothes. Where I grew up in Wisconsin, I was short and everyone was tall, so I also picked up sewing. Then in my 20s, I started working at an ad agency in New York City and I became even more aware of the culture of waste. There was so little thought put into the full life cycle of products and what happens to them. I wondered if there was a different way to do things. Could we make making fun?
Davy: One of metahaiku’s goals is to be a sort of lifestyle choice. We pride ourselves on being informal, casual, welcoming and being flexible. We don't have any dogmatic beliefs we're trying to force onto you. We just want to show you an alternate way of thinking about the world, an alternate way of creating.
Let’s talk about creating. How do you think about craft, and the way you think about making at metahaiku?
Amy: A lot of what we make has less to do with what we want to make, and more, like, what can we do with what needs to be used.
Davy: For example, when we first moved in, every wall of the space had windows, and we got full sun all morning and all afternoon. We needed curtains. Anyone whose bought curtains knows it's extremely expensive, and so we made them ourselves. Amy used recycled linens and old fabrics that had been in her family for 100 years. Finding things that have lived full lives and reusing them—giving them new meaning and purpose. That is important to us.
Amy: We definitely are constantly trying to be students and are inviting other people to make things as well, whether it’s "good" or "bad."
Davy: Our first project as metahaiku was a gallery opening for SIZED, an amazing gallery here in LA. They had us shoot 300 art objects—Picassos, Vanessa Beecroft pieces and different architectural objects.
Amy: One of my favorite projects… our friends have this brand called, A Good Used Book. It’s a used bookstore and pop-up shop. We hosted them at metahaiku and created a reading room where they brought in a thousand books. Everyone could come and shop, buy books, read and just hang out.
How do you get started with an idea or a concept?
Davy: metahaiku is just us. It’s just us figuring it out as we go. We don’t have interns, we don’t have employees. There’s no PR agency and no management. At the end of the day though, we are a business and anything we can use to help us tell our story... every little bit helps.
Amy: We were both curious about some of the new tools in the AI world.
Davy: When we discovered Tome, there was an ease of use that was important to us.
What did it feel like to use Tome for the first time?
Amy: It felt like a lot of the barriers to getting started were taken away. It’s a really easy way to start telling stories more naturally. Other apps have an archaic feel to them.
Davy: Staring at a blank screen is always very intimidating. I don’t know anyone who’s really stoked to start from scratch. Tome gives me a really great starting place and for someone like me, that's a really useful tool. I can jump right into the fun part which is the creative directing and the design!
Any favorite features you can share?
Amy: It does a great job of translating what we create on a desktop… into a mobile version. We love using Tome as a mood board, we love creating pitch decks, we send clients work portfolios showing all the things we’re capable of.
Davy: I can just experiment, play. I love the world building that happens. We’re constantly discovering new ways to use Tome.
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