Local independent book publisher Chin Music Press today opened a new office and retail/exhibit space in Seattle’s famed Pike Place Market. The retail space, open from 11am to 5pm Tuesday through Saturday, will feature all Chin Music titles as well as related posters, zines, chapbooks, stationery, broadsides and other artwork.
“It’s a great privilege for a small publisher like us to be able to obtain space at Pike Place Market,” said Chin Music Press Publisher Bruce Rutledge. “We now have room to give all of our titles the shelf space and attention they deserve. But more importantly, we can add to the literary ecosystem in Seattle. We look forward to connecting with other presses, bookstores, artists and lovers of literature to make our space a vibrant part of the community.”
“The Pike Place Market is very pleased to have Chin Music Press join the market community," said Kelly Lindsay, director of programs and marketing for the Pike Place Market Preservation and Development Authority. "We believe the Seattle community, as well as visitors from around the world, will enjoy Chin Music’s first retail store and the opportunity to directly engage with featured artists, writers and photographers. Now home to five independent bookstores, the Pike Place Market is a destination for people who love to read. ”
Chin Music Press is best known in Seattle for such titles as Shiro: Wit, Wisdom and Recipes from a Sushi Pioneer, Yokohama Yankee and A Commonplace Book of Pie. It has won awards and accolades for its books, with one NPR reviewer saying the press provided “a triumphant kick in the pants for anyone who doubts the future of paper-and-ink books.”
Many of the publisher’s books focus on Northeast Asia, especially Japan. The Japan Times recently called Chin Music Press “an independent publisher that has produced some of the best collections of contemporary literature from Japan over the past decade or so.”
Chin Music co-owner and translator Yuko Enomoto said of the move to Pike Place Market, “I hope that in some small way our presence in the Market helps reconnect it with its Japanese roots.” Before World War II, Japanese and Japanese-American farmers were thought to make up as many as 80% of the farmers selling at the Market. But they were forcibly evacuated from the West Coast in 1942, which contributed to the steep decline of the Market in the first few decades after World War II and almost resulted in its dissolution.
Pike Place Market is the longest continuously operating farmers’ market in the United States. Sometimes called “the soul of Seattle,” it is the city’s No. 1 tourist spot, attracting more than 10 million people annually. "Chin Music Press is opening a bookstore in what's arguably the most Seattle spot in Seattle. It's a beautiful, needed, and calculated risk, and I'm proud to call them my publisher," said poet and baker Kate Lebo.
The newly renovated space will host a meet-and-greet on Saturday, July 19, from noon to 2pm with D. Michael Ramirez, who translated the recently released bilingual poetry collection Lizard Telepathy, Fox Telepathy by Osaka poet and award-winning photographer Yoshinori Henguchi. The event is free and open to the public.
The Chin Music Press office and retail space at Pike Place Market is located at 1501 Pike Place #329, Seattle, WA 98125. For more information, visit chinmusicpress.com.