~ MotorAve Guitars ~
Mark Fuqua was born and raised in Northern California. He, like many of his peers, picked up the guitar at a young age. He played in bands throughout his adolescence and young adulthood in Eugene Oregon and Seattle Washington. He was good with his hands and had some basic woodworking skills, but he had not translated that to the guitar until he started working for Chandler Industries in San Francisco, in 1990.
During Mark’s two years with Chandler, he began his first guitar repair operation. He started freelancing for an infamous guitar store, Black Market Music, where he eventually worked for five years. The sheer volume of gear that passed through that store was an education in itself, and greatly influenced Mark’s design aesthetic.
In 1998 Mark moved to Paris to work with James Trussart, whom he continued to build guitars for when he returned to the States. During the next few years Mark got married and spent a while in North Carolina, where he worked for Terry McInturff and refined and gained the skills that made Mark the master luthier that he is today.
Mark was still helping James Trussart on and off in 2002, when he opened his first MotorAve shop on Venice Blvd. in LA. At this point Mark was just doing a little work for Trussart (painting Trussart necks and Steeltop bodies/fabricating bridge support blocks and tension bars for the Bigsby on Trussart thinline guitars), but by the time the first BelAire rolled off the line, Mark and James had professionally parted ways. They remain great friends.
Mark moved the shop to Sunset Blvd. in Hollywood CA and continued to slowly build MotorAve guitars while juggling an ever increasing repair business. In 2007 the decision was made to concentrate on building, and MotorAve guitars was relocated to Durham, North Carolina, where MotorAve Guitars are made today.