National glass artist coming to Sassafras
Published 2:32 pm Monday, October 20, 2014
Glass pieces edged in 24-karat gold or platinum are the signature style of California based Annie Morhauser, creator of Annieglass, and Wednesday the artisan will be in Vicksburg to help celebrate the 25th anniversary of Sassafras, the downtown retailer that sells Morhauser’s work.
Coupled with its durability and elegance, Annieglass has become popular in Vicksburg and in the south in general said Nancy Bullard, the owner of Sassafras.
“If you take the department stores out of the equation, Morhauser sells more of her glassware in the South than anywhere, she said.
Email newsletter signup
“I have sold so many pieces of Annieglss in Mississippi, I think every man, woman and child must own a piece,” said Morhauser.
Prior to this week’s celebration, Morhauser had previously visited Vicksburg in 2008 and 2010.
“I love Vicksburg. It is such a nice place, and I can’t wait to see Martha,” Morhauser said.
Morhauser was referring to local resident Martha Day.
The last time Morhauser visited Vicksburg, Sassafras held a recipe contest in which contestants could bring in their own creation served on a piece of Annieglass.
Day won the contest and a piece of Annieglass with her “sculpted tomato” recipe, Bullard said.
Despite the elegance of Annieglass, Bullard said, the glassware is not fragile. “It is dishwasher safe,” she said, and it is chip and tarnish resistant.
Bullard said she thinks the glassware is so durable because of Morhauser’s process. “After she comes up with her design, a mold is made,” Bullard said. “She then takes sheets of glass and forms them over the mold. It is then fired to form the shape of the mold. Artists then hand apply either the gold or platinum to the glass pieces, and it is then fired again at 1,000 degree temperature which fuses the metal to the glass.”
Bullard said she thinks the double firing and high temperatures make the glassware resilient.
Morhauser studied art and dance at California College of the Arts where she graduated in 1979.
“I went to school to study glass blowing, and I also took some business classes so I could one day start my own store,” she said.
The artist made good on her ambition, and now along with owning her own store in Watsonville Calif., the same town where her glassware is produced, Annieglass is also sold by luxury retailers including Neiman Marcus, Gump’s and Bergdorf Goodman.
Morhauser’s glassware is also displayed in the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Smithsonian Museum of American Art in Washington.
This year, Morhauser has created seven new patterns adding to her already popular Roman antique pattern and ruffle pattern, said Bullard, all of which will be available at Sassafras.
The anniversary celebration will run from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Wednesday.
Morhauser will be on hand to personalize pieces sold, and a portion of the day’s proceeds will be donated to the Vicksburg Storehouse Food Pantry, Bullard said.
For more information, call 601-638-3744.