Marz Saffore was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia. She moved to New York in 2011 to pursue a Bachelor of Arts in Honors Studio Arts and Film and Media Studies at University of Rochester. In May, she will receive a MFA in Studio Art from New York University Steinhardt upon completing her thesis. Additionally, she teaches Intro Video as an adjunct professor at NYU Steinhardt.
Marz addresses what bell hooks labels “the imperialist White supremacist capitalist patriarchy” through direct, strategic action. Summer 2016, she joined MTL+ Collective, a collaboration that joins research, aesthetics, and organizing in its practice. Fall 2016, MTL+ facilitated Decolonize This Place, an action-oriented movement space focused on Black liberation, free Palestine, Indigenous struggles, de-gentrification, and global wage workers. Currently, she’s organizing with students in NYU Steinhardt’s Department of Art & Art Professions. Concerning the department’s White supremacist, capitalist, and patriarchal culture, they write, “We assert that liberation is not achieved only by action, but also by resisting the oppressive structures and language of dialogue.”
Marz does not necessarily identify herself as an “activist.” Nor is she excited about the term “artist.” Both terms are heavily co-opted and institutionalized. In an attempt to “resist oppressive structures and language,” she’s exploring other options. She explains, “For now I identify as an ‘artist as organizer,’ however, I’m not sure that fully transcends oppressive language and cultures either. I like what bell hooks calls herself, a ‘cultural critic.’ I dig that. My dream is to low🔑 become a ‘cultural producer’ or a ‘public persona’ or some shit. I low🔑 wanna be Drake 😂😂😂 low🔑.”