Image: Bowl (detail), Vivika and Otto Heino, 20th Century, U.S.A., clay. Collection Mingei International Museum. Gift of Roy Leeper and Gaylord Hall. Photo by Lynton Gardiner. 1996-32-009.

On View

Nov 20, 2005 - Mar 19, 2006

Curated By

Martha Longenecker

The exhibition was a collaboration between Mingei International, The Ventura County Museum of History and Art and the Craft & Folk Art Museum, Los Angeles. On view were more than 90 bottles, bowls, platters and tiles made between 1940 and 2004. The exhibition was funded in part by The City of San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture and The County of San Diego Community Enhancement Program.

The exhibition, composed of objects from OTTO HEINO: Celebrating 90 Years (Ventura County Museum of History and Art) and CERAMIC MASTERS: The Art of Vivika and Otto Heino (Craft & Folk Art Museum, Los Angeles) featured works from the collection of Forrest L. Merrill. In addition, there were objects from Mingei International's permanent collection, The Ventura County Museum of History and Art and private collectors.

The Heinos' dedication to making simple, useful, refined pots and their strong work ethic enabled them to succeed as potters, an unusual profession at the time they began. Working together until her death in 1995, they signed all their pots Vivika + Otto. During the 1950s, Vivika taught at USC and the Chouinard Art Institute in Los Angeles and served as a technical advisor to Twentieth Century Fox. Several years later, they moved to New Hampshire, but returned to California in 1974 establishing their pottery in Ojai on property purchased from their friend and fellow potter Beatrice Wood. There Otto continues to make his pots.

Vivika and Otto Heino participated in more than 200 national and international exhibitions at museums including the Picasso Museum, Vallauris, France, the De Young Museum, San Francisco, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the American Craft Museum, New York, the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, DC and the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. Their honors include Otto's gold medal from the Sixth Biennial International de Ceramique at Vallauris, France in1978, his Diplôme d'Honneur from the International Academy of Ceramics in 1955, Vivika's 1978 appointment to the Apprentice Fellowship Advisory Panel of the National Endowment for the Arts and her 1991 honor as Trustee Emeritus for the American Crafts Council in New York.

Playing throughout the run of the exhibition was the film on compact disk, Otto Heino: A Way with Clay.

A catalogue of the same name produced by The Ventura County Museum of History and Art and the Craft & Folk Art Museum, Los Angeles accompanied THE ART OF VIVIKA AND OTTO HEINO.