The year 2012 marks the 50th anniversary of the development of studio glass in the United States. In order to commemorate this milestone Litvak Gallery will present an exhibition celebrating one of the most influential schools of studio glassmaking – the Pilchuck Glass School. Pilchuck Glass School was founded in 1971 by glass artist Dale Chihuly and patrons Anne Gould Hauberg and John H. Hauberg. What began as a one-summer glassblowing workshop has grown into the world's most comprehensive center for glass art education. Pilchuck's philosophy of education flows from Dale Chihuly's original idea of "artists teaching artists." At the beginning, the school was not very structured, but progressively became more structured. On display are works by Pilchuck founder, teacher and artist Dale Chihuly; Pilchuck student, teacher and collaborating artist William Morris; and Pilchuck teachers, collaborating artists, and former trustees Flora Mace and Joey Kirkpatrick. Born in 1941 in Tacoma, Washington, Dale Chihuly was introduced to glass while studying interior design at the University of Washington. After graduating in 1965, Chihuly enrolled in the first glass program in the country, at the University of Wisconsin. He continued his studies at the Rhode Island School of Design, where he later established the glass program and taught for over a decade. It was during his time at RISD that Chihuly began to seriously think about starting a glass school where students could "experiment with methods other than those used in conventional college art classes and conduct an outdoor workshop so students would receive inspiration from nature." John and Anne Hauberg had the vision to financially support the blossoming idea of Dale Chihuly and the Pilchuck Glass School. Dan Klein has stated, "Chihuly, with his team of skilled artists, has made a permanent mark on the American glass movement. Both the glass and Chihuly's way of working have had an impact on what glass is and how it is made in the US." William Morris was discovered by Dale Chihuly when as a 25 year old in 1978 he was driving a truck at Pilchuck, and within six years he had developed into an accomplished glass-blower. Today Morris is a virtuoso artist and technician, having learnt much that he now knows in the course of helping Chihuly with his work. Morris has said, "If there is one thing that I've learned more from Pilchuck than anything...it's that when I work with my crew, I want an atmosphere of open-mindedness and of people willing to share. A deduction of ego, and a real striving for the common creative effort." This view truly embodies Pilchuck's vision of artists helping, teaching, and influencing other artists. Joey Kirkpatrick and Flora Mace have worked collaboratively for the past 30 years after meeting at the Pilchuck Glass School in 1979, where they were also artists-in-residence. Kirkpatrick recently retired after serving as a trustee on the board of Pilchuck Glass School for 16 years. Joey Kirkpatrick and Flora Mace taught glassblowing in the hot shop during Session II. "We were the first women to teach glassblowing at Pilchuck," says Mace. "And we taught a class that was the first – as Chihuly puts it – ‘educational' class. We went right back to the basics..." Mace and Kirkpatrick were the first faculty to require students to come to class and to curb blowing hours. As Litvak Gallery joins the AACG in celebrating the 50th anniversary of American studio glass, this exhibition honoring the Pilchuck School of Glass presents historically significant works, obtained from the artists and the Litvak Gallery private collection.