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VIZ CITY BLOG: Audio, photos, transcripts & more by Terry Way and Sandy Brown Jensen.Airs every other Wednesday during Morning Edition and Here & Now.

Lillian Pitt, "Gifts From My Ancestors," Showing at the White Lotus Gallery

Lillian Pitt is a Pacific Northwest Native American artist whose ancestors lived in and near the Columbia River Gorge. The focus of her work is on creating contemporary fine art pieces that delight today’s art lovers, and at the same time, honor the histo
Portrait of the Artist by Sandy Brown Jensen

You’re listening to Viz City, KLCC’s Arts Review program. Lillian Pitt is a well-known Native American artist who has a show, “Gifts of My Ancestors” currently at the White Lotus Gallery. Viz City asked her about where she finds the soul of her art.

LILLIAN "Oh, you know, I was born in Warm Springs Confederated Tribes. My great, great grandmother lived in the village below the watchful gaze of “She Who Watches,” Tsagaglal, and that’s an over 10,00 year petroglyph, and the rock paintings, the petroglyphs, and the basket designs of my people, and the beaded bag designs, all have been my source of inspiration."

Terry In the gallery, you can see that Lillian has translated the iconic face of “She Who Watches into many mediums, including a bronze on the wall on your right as you come in, as well as into lead crystal in a glass sculpture that changes color as the ambient light shifts.

Lillian says about “She Who Watches”:

LILLIAN "Since she overlooks the village where my great-great grandmother lived--I never knew that until I was in my mid-thirties--so it gave me a… strong sense of identity, and a purpose, a purpose to do my work and my purpose to let people know we’re still here, we’re still working, we’re thriving. And I thought How can I do this, and I thought, well, I can do this by doing artwork."

NARRATOR:  See “Gifts of My Ancestors,” at the White Lotus Gallery, located at767 Willamette Street in Eugene through December 19. Learn more and see images of Lillian Pitt and her work at the Viz City blog on KLCC.org. 

Viz City is co-produced by Terry Way and Sandy Brown Jensen.


"Bear Mother" by Lillian Pitt is wood-fired clay, feather, beads, shell, wood and metal
Credit Gallery Photo by Sandy Brown Jensen
"Bear Mother" by Lillian Pitt is wood-fired clay, feather, beads, shell, wood and metal

"She Who Watches," by Lillian Pitt Cast New Zealand lead crystal, copper, and black marble
Credit Gallery Photo by Sandy Brown Jensen

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"All Spirits Worrying About the Salmon," Lillian Pitt, mixed media

"Spirit of the Puffin," by Lillian Pitt"Spirit of the Puffin," by Lillian Pitt Wood-fired clay and steel
Credit Gallery Photo by Sandy Brown Jensen

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Terry Way has been hosting Viz City, KLCC's visual arts review program, since 2000. Terry hosts the show with Sandy Brown Jensen.