Around the same time as the Beach Boys were getting started in LA and the Vietnam War was in full swing, an amazing nun was hard at work in a tiny art department, at a school in the Hollywood Hills. During the 1960’s Sister Mary Corita Kent transformed her tiny art department into a global center for design and printmaking. Her art classes emphasised the importance of love, creativity and community using popular culture, such as song lyrics and advertising slogans as raw materials for her meaning-filled bursts of text and colour.
Kent's work was unapologetically positive, drawing inspiration from scripture, advertising and the streets of Los Angeles. She made hundreds of screen prints to communicate her message as widely as possible. Her work led to a great friendship with two of the best designers from the last century Charles and Ray Eames who would have had a similar approach to design, play and exploration. The American designer Buckminster Fuller described his visit to the department as "among the most fundamentally inspiring experiences of my life." She was a hero to many but known to only a few.
We love her work, attitude and spiritual mind. Above is a selection of her work, which you can view by clicking the arrows. If you are about Dublin there is a great little show of her work in our favourite gallery, The Douglas Hyde. It is well worth a visit.