Winter, Jeanette

Sister Corita's Words and Shapes

(2) K-3 Corita Kent's "Rainbow Swash" is a long-familiar sight to Boston commuters, splashed across an enormous natural gas tank alongside Interstate 93, but her bold, bright, and devout serigraphs were everywhere in the 1960s and 1970s. Corita is an apt choice for Winter's ­hagiographic leanings and iconographic style; see, for example, her previous picture-book biographies of Georgia O'Keeffe (rev. 9/98), Hildegard of Bingen (rev. 9/07), and Zaha Hadid (rev. 9/17). As ever, Winter's focus is on the art and the inspiration it both requires and bestows. As a teaching nun in Los Angeles, Corita taught her students to look closely everywhere, to find the sacred in the mundane, as in her famous that they may have life, which pairs a close-up view of a Wonder Bread label with a quote from Gandhi about the presence of God in bread. Winter's own modest, miniaturist style contrasts well with her depictions of Corita's ­exuberant splashes and swashes and scrawls, and the joyful creativity of both artists is palpable. Appended are Corita's (terrific) ten rules for her students, a bit about her conflicts with the Church, and a brief ­bibliography.


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