My 35 Year Story|
Posting Number 3437 Date: 08/17/20 Return to Posting List
I, Mark Chamovitz, would like to tell a story that has taken me thirty five years to write. I wont go into full detail of my acquisition of my vase as its a rather long story which was told in its entirety at a symposium some years ago by me in a presentation titled, if you could only keep one from ones collection to keep.
I fell in love with my vase in approximately 1985 when I first laid eyes on it at an Antique show held in Pittsburgh. It was large, and striking under the dealers lights. It stood alone on a black pedestal on her tiered display. I knew I had to have it. The asking price was reasonable for the piece based on its beauty, size, and workmanship I felt. Mind you, this was the mid eighties when French and English cameo pieces were the hot glass collectibles, and they were commanding crazy asking prices from dealers , and they were getting it! Anyhow, there is a lot more to the story, but in order to move along, Ill just say I acquired the vase for a piece of Tiffany pastel and a small amount of cash.
From the moment of its purchase, I started on my road to having this vase playing a big part in my life, and because of my love for the piece, I always envisioned finding a mate for it as I felt having a pair of these would make for a nice display on a mantle. I attempted to find out those first few years all I could about my vase having only learned about Frederick Carder and acid cut back pieces when the dealer was making the sale with me and she told me of the old colored Steuben pieces from earlier in the century.
In those early years, books, trade papers, flea markets, and antique shows were how I attempted to find out about my vase. Many years went by and I hadnt found out much until a dealer of Steuben (Donna Fischer) whos name I found in a trade paper suggested that I go to Corning. I took the trip up to Corning, and that was in the mid 90s when I met both Bob and Bobby Rockwell. I learned more about my vase and was told it was scarce, and finding a mate for it would be difficult. I kind of figured that because I hadnt seen one in that past ten years. It was suggested that I might be interested in joining the Friends of Carder at that time, which I didnt do.
I subsequently went to Corning a few times in the next few years for my glass education at the museum and to breath in the air in the town where so much glass history had occurred. For me, its always been like a child going to Disneyland. On Bob Rockwells suggestion the second time to join the now Carder Steuben Club, which I did. That was in 2005 or 06, I believe. All those years and symposiums later, and meeting all the wonderful people associated with my passion for glass, and getting to know them throughout the years have played a huge role in my life. It all happened only because of my vase which through all the years and pieces that have come and gone in my glass collecting, my vase is the piece that I would keep if I could only keep one. I never was able to find its mate all those years but I continued to pursue the dream of finding one. I saw one pictured in Toms book which was on long term loan to CMOG, and some years later, our late friend, Jim Sutterfield showed me that he had one very similar in his collection, although his was slightly different.
In all the years of looking, this is as close as I got to finding a mate for my piece, and certainly after three and a half decades, ones hope of finding one diminishes. That is until earlier this month on a boring Saturday night. I just happened to go on eBay as I had so many thousands of times before to see what might be interesting. I went to my saved Steuben category, and I was floored. There, after 35 years, and totally unexpected was the recently listed (within the first hour of the listing) Florida pattern, Amethyst over Alabaster, #6468 vase. Ironically, the asking price was the exact same price as my vase was thirty five years ago. Again, even though this seems like a long story, it palls in comparison to how many twists and turns the whole story took. Long story short, my vase now has a mate on the mantle and the realization that my longest owned piece of glass contributed to many moments of joy, the meeting of so very many wonderful friends, so many trips to the crystal city, and my many years of admiration and respect for the fellow that made it all possible, Frederick Carder.
Click to view image one: 6468.jpeg
Click to view image two: 6468.1.jpeg
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