Tuesday, January 6, 2009

1/18 - Oregon Before the White Explorers Knew It at Hillsboro

photo, artist Lillian Pitt
Hillsboro Main Library will be presenting a talk by Native American artist Lillian Pitt, Sunday, January 18 at 2 PM. The talk and an exhibit of her carvings, masks and sculpture are free of charge.

Ms. Pitt, a member of the Warm Springs/Wasco tribe, will speak about the life and culture of the Columbia River Gorge's indigenous people before the Gorge was explored and settled by white pioneers.

“I use the ancient stories of my ancestors as a basis for the imagery I create. By doing this I maintain the memory of an ancient culture and keep the beliefs of my people alive.... My ancestors have a 10,000 year history in the Columbia River Gorge. Much of my work has to do with the preservation and care of the environment along this ancient waterway,” Ms. Pitt explains.

“She Who Watches,” the Columbia River petroglyph that represents the last of the Woman Chiefs, appears frequently in her work.

Primarily a ceramics artist, she also produces sculptures in glass, bronze, and wood. She also creates paintings, drawings, prints, jewelry, and wearable art.

Her work is exhibited often in Portland galleries, including Quintana, and in museums; she also has contributed to public artworks. Her most recent award was the Earle A. Chiles Award for 2007 in acknowledgement for her art in sustaining ancient Columbia Plateau cultures and beliefs, and for promoting harmony within people, communities, and nature.

Lillian Pitt’s presentation is the first event in 2009 commemorating Oregon’s 150th anniversary of statehood. Her visit is also the first of a periodic series of Pacific Northwest Artist lectures the Library will host. For more information about this and other events, visit the library, call 503-615-6500, or go to www.hillsboro.plinkit.org/.

The Hillsboro Main Library is located at 2850 NE Brookwood Pkwy.