Round Bottles
Other Shpaes
News & Press
About Otto
The Pottery
Contact Us

Vivika's green bowl

Vivika's first ceramic, made in 1936


Selected memorabilia of Vivika Heino is on loan to the local museum for the “ “Smart and Sassy: Artistic Historic Women” Exhibit.                     

This museum exhibit showcases 17 historic women of the valley.  Large photos and accompanying texts describe these pioneer women and their contributions to local life and culture. Vivika is one of the women showcased, and she was indeed a Renaissance woman as reflected in the display. Her silver crafted jewelry, carded/woven hangings, bookbinding skills, flower arranging and ceramics are but a few of the crafts that she excelled in.











Photographs: ©Helen Heino or from the Heino family photo album.

Vivika at wheelIn remembrance of Vivika
(1910 - 1995)

"Pottery, if it is to be of any lasting value, must have life...How is this 'life' achieved in one's work? It is the result of the combination of two factors: the completeness of craftsmanship and the expression of the indivduality of the potter."

-- Vivika Heino

Vivika Heino was vivacious and outgoing. She studied under Glen Lukens at University of Southern California and was the first woman to receive her MFA at New York State College of Ceramics, Alfred, New York. She became an outstanding teacher. In fact, this is how they met; Otto married his teacher.

Vivika and Otto displayed an openess and accessibility in both their way of life and their work. She readily shared with others her vast knowledge of clays, glazes, and technical knowledge of firing kilns. Vivika's work had a more delicate aspect in porcelain and stoneware, but her greatest gifts were the glazes. The rich colors and variety and clays Vivika and Otto formulated can be found in every ceramic laboratory and have been shared with many people through books and magazines.

Together, Otto and Vivika participated in over 200 national and international exhibits, and were awarded many distinctions and recognitions. In 1978, she was appointed to the Apprentice Fellowship Advisory Panel of the National Endowment for the Arts. In 1991, Vivika was honored as Trustee Emeritus for the American Crafts Council in New York.

Vivika and Otto, originally from the east coast, settled in California and made their home in a house formerly owned by Beatrice Wood. Through their great energy and love of creating beauty, they made a studio and home surrounded by a lush garden. To live and work in their studio as true craftsmen and pursue excellence in their pottery has been the Heino's lifelong goal. At the time of her death in 1995, Vivika was working on the recipe for the yellow glaze but never finished it. In remembrance of Vivika, Otto kept on with the experiments and so dedicates his discovery to her.

Other photos:


Vivika display

Framed photograph of Vivika Heino

Ceramics on display:

Salt glazed bottle on stoneware with light blue and Albany slip decoration (1985), Small teardrop bottle with iron crystals  (1990), Porcelain goblet with blue slip decoration  (1947), Ceramic tile with blue slip floral decoration (1990), Sugar bowl with lid lightly brushed on decoration in a greenish hue (1947), Commissioned small plate with green glaze/oxidation (1946)

Vivika memorabilia

The art seen in these photographs was made by Vivika Heino.  She was an artist who used multiple mediums.  Vivika’s floral arrangements were often created/displayed when she was an active member of the Garden Club. Bookbinding and writing were also other areas in which she excelled.

Three silver bracelets from Vivika’s personal collection of hand-tooled silver.  She was seldom seen without being adorned with handcrafted silver jewelry; the majority of her collection was designed/crafted by her.

Orange/yellowish tan and natural fibers create a delicate design on wool that has been hand carded/dyed on a self-constructed loom by Vivika.

Beige and neutral wool fibers are woven into a design with feathers/beads intricately intertwined and attached to adorn this woolen, hand-woven wall hanging.

Vivika and Otto in their office, 1994

Vivika and Otto in their cactus garden