“Burner”, 2019. 21”x 12”x 7”. Salt chamber of Noborigama wood kiln, colored clay and stain.

“Burner”, 2019. 21”x 12”x 7”. Salt chamber of Noborigama wood kiln, colored clay and stain.

Vital Breath

Solo Show by Vicki Lynn Wilson

Show run: August 24 - September 4

Artist talk, Reception and Unveiling of the Artist’s Mosaic Planters Project:

Sat, August 31, 6 pm


About Vital Breath

Vital Breath” is a translation for words in various languages that mean soul or psyche. The work in this show draws on Wilson’s established language of using the figure as a platform for the psychological experiences of memory, dream and emotion. While some of the work reflects on the past, many sculptures are manifestations of excitement and hope for the future.

The sculpture “Burner” (at left) is one such work. Radiating colors and shapes burst forth from the head of this figure, referencing sunrise, flame and a really good hair day. Wilson notes:

These images are expressions of empathy and that is the real progress that has happened at this residency. Hope for the future, for me, includes putting my self into others’ shoes. In my mind, these sculptures hold gender, race and life stories other than my own, but we all inhabit the same psychological spaces. We all feel hope and hopelessness, loss, love and desire. This work helps me to consider others journeys.

Wilson’s one year long residency at District Clay Center was more than an opportunity to concentrate on a body of work. Vicki grew up in the DMV area but has called Oregon “home” for the past 24 years. Her residency at District Clay brought her into close proximity with her birthplace, relatives and the very origins of her family. The result is this stunning new body of sculptural ceramic work now on view at the District Clay Center Gallery.


About the Mosaic Planters Fundraising Project for Community Clay

As artist in residence, Wilson taught in District Clay’s Community Clay! Program, the non-profit arm of the District Clay Center that provides weekly free clay classes to kids at THEARC Community Center in SE DC. As her residency concluded, Wilson spearheaded an effort to raise the funds for next year’s program. With a goal of $2500, the project raised almost $4000 in a month long campaign.

Contributors could donate $30 to the program and get a personal inscription or name inscribed on a tile for one of two large mosaic planters that will border the entrance to the center. Wilson created the design and cement planter structures as well as a complementary mosaic exterior sign for the center. The mosaic planters will be unveiled during Vicki’s artist talk on Saturday, August 31st at 6 pm.


About Vicki Lynn Wilson

Vicki Lynn Wilson was born in District Heights, MD and moved to Oregon in 1995 after an Art Foundation year at VCU. She holds a BFA from Pacific Northwest College of Art and an MFA from Portland State University, both in Sculpture.

Wilson has been collaborating on public and private commissions with her husband, John Larsen , for over a decade. The team has completed several permanent installations including the Oregon Zoo and Main Street Oregon City. The pair was awarded multiple Presidential Volunteer Service awards for their unique neighborhood community garden.

Wilson has taught Sculpture, Ceramics, Drawing and Design for Oregon colleges since 2005 and was a 2017 artist in residence at Cub Creek Foundation in Appomattox, Va. In Fall 2019, Wilson will be teaching Ceramics and Design at Marymount University and leading a neighborhood art project as a visiting artist at Baltimore Clayworks.