Featured Artist – Vivian Basing


Would anyone in Potters and Sculptors not recognize the lilting South African accent and the beautiful Shino and Woo Woo blue glaze on her pots?  Oh yes, this month’s featured artist is a most talented lady who was born in Zambia and with her parents moved to South Africa when she was 6.  

Although she spent eleven (11) years teaching grades 3 through 7, she discovered ceramics at age 18 when she first saw a woman demonstrating ‘throwing on the wheel’.  Subsequently digging terracotta clay and taking classes with the woman that demonstrated ‘throwing’, launched Vivian’s interest and eventual career in ceramics.

She studied with Kerry Ellis, studio potter for six more years.  Interestingly, he made all of the wheels and kilns for his own studio.  

When Vivian returned to his studio to buy another wheel for her workplace, she ended up buying his studio.  Averaging 80 students (16 wheels) she held classes all during the day and evening for the next 15 years.  She made her own glazes and clay from recipes, but felt she never had time for more artistic pieces.

Vivian has been married for 40 years with 2 sons and 1 daughter.  They first moved to London and won a green card lottery.  She and her husband migrated to the US in 2011 and has lived in Laguna Woods for 4 ½ years.

She likes helping people.  As one of the most task oriented folks in Potters and Sculptors, Vivian took the responsibility of organizing Bonanza.  Well done!

Her current focus is on shape: lidded pots with extruded pieces added, as she is diligently working towards making them larger.   Shino and Woo Woo blue have become her trademark.  Vivian enjoys coil pots – “just because I love the shapes I can make”.  She throws mugs to relax (six to ten at a crack), pulling their handles, trimming, and glazing every part.

Vivian loves walking and enjoys sewing all kinds of bags –she has done most crafts and even owned a scrapbooking shop.   Multi-faceted—multi-talented—just plain MULTI!