Collection: AKM | Artist Biography

Andrew Morris, better known as AKM or simply "pipemaker," is an American borosilicate glass artist celebrated for his signature sculpted skulls and intricate murrine work. His anatomical creations often feature encased disk opals as eyes, a technique that adds an undeniable depth and recognition to his pieces. AKM’s fascination with skulls stems from a deep interest in anatomy as a whole, finding beauty and elegance in the human form (even in its most raw and exposed state), and has led him to explore this theme throughout his career. But AKM's artistry extends far beyond iconic imagery; his journey is one of continuous learning, pushing boundaries, and a deep appreciation for the collaborative spirit.

Born in Alexandria, Virginia, AKM's artistic journey began early. Influenced by his skilled woodworker father, he experimented with making things from a young age, from bows and arrows to skate ramps. A chance encounter with glassblowing, thanks to his mother signing his father up for a class, sparked a lifelong passion. He began blowing soft glass in high school and continued his studies at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), earning a BFA. While at VCU, AKM delved into various mediums and techniques, but ultimately it was sculpture and murrine that captivated him. He credits his VCU experience, especially the mentorship of Professors Emilio Santini and Jack Wax, with making him a versatile and fearless artist, eager to push the boundaries of the medium. With his newfound knowledge of color theory, he began mixing his own glass colors, finding it not only enhances vibrancy but also adds intrigue to his work.

Collaboration plays a crucial role in AKM's artistic process. He values the "knowledge share" it fosters, learning from others while imparting his own expertise. This collaborative spirit is evident in his numerous projects with fellow glassblowers as well as Portland-based borosilicate glass manufacturer Northstar Glassworks, who invited Andrew to conduct color-testing and create over 100 skull pendants for their Color Chart poster and Abe's Vault line as a way to help others understand their colors' potential.

Based in Richmond, Virginia, AKM continues to cultivate his studio as a hub for local glass artists. He is a multiple World Series of Glass winner, and has demonstrated his skills at renowned events like Degenerate Flameoff, GAS Conference, and Glass Vegas. Andrew Morris, the artist behind the AKM moniker, is more than just a pipemaker. He is a sculptor, a color alchemist, and a passionate advocate for collaboration and artistic freedom. His work continues to evolve, pushing the boundaries of glass art while offering a unique perspective on life, death, and the beauty of the human form.