Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Give a Damn.

I first became aware of Sister Mary Corita Kent (1918-1986) through an article in a 1999 Mohawk Paper paper sample book, and have been looking out for her work ever since. There's a great book that came out last year which I have yet to pick up, but I have a few older things, including this book she produced in 1970.

The Corita Art Center's website has a good biography on her which I won't go into here—suffice it to say that she was a nun who came to prominence as an artist during an extraordinarily liberal time in the '60s Catholic church, both through her own work and by leading the art department of the Immaculate Heart College in Los Angeles. Her friends and admirers included Charles Eames, Saul Bass, and Buckminster Fuller, who described a visit to her classroom as "among the most fundamentally inspiring experiences" of his life.

Damn Everything but the Circus, Corita's sixth book, came out after she had left the Order of the Immaculate Heart of Mary to focus on her artwork, and is essentially a decorative alphabet using various quotes she found inspirational and relevant at the time. Like so many things from that era, it seems just as relevant today. Click to enlarge any of the images.

"Damn everything but the circus!" –e. e. cummings

"I should like to be able to love my country and still love justice."
–Albert Camus

"Those who are willing to be vulnerable move among mysteries." –Theodore Roethke

"love is the every only god" –e. e. cummings

"But do your thing and I shall know you." –Ralph Waldo Emerson

1 comment:

charrow said...

I just purchased an art print part of the Pilgrims Publishing company from 1968. I have no idea if its a poster or what. I asked the seller if it was a screen print or poster and all I got was "vintage print." I'm not super worried either way b/c its an awesome print, but I did not pay an arm and a leg. If you have any info it would be most appreciated.