Remembering master potter Otto Heino
A master of his art who generously shared his knowledge -- except for a secret formula for a valuable yellow glaze -- and supported many art institutions, he personified the spirit and work ethic of California's studio crafts movement.
Heino died Thursday at 94. Until then, he hardly missed a beat in building a distinguished body of work -- first with his wife, Vivika, who died in 1995, and then on his own.
After a decade of experimentation, the couple came up with a way to re-create a luscious yellow glaze that had been treasured by the Chin dynasty in China but lost for centuries. Claiming to have been offered a fortune for the formula but refusing to sell it, Otto cheerfully used the glaze on his own pots, priced at $25,000 and more.
"I am the oldest, richest potter in the world," he told The Times in a 2008 interview.
To read Heino's obituary, click here.
-- Suzanne Muchnic
Photo: Otto Heino in his studio. Credit: Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times