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Identification and Creation

Object Number
Corita Kent (Sister Mary Corita), American (Fort Dodge, Iowa 1918 - 1986 Boston, Massachusetts)
tender be - part one - sr. william
Work Type
Creation Place: North America, United States, California, Los Angeles
Persistent Link

Physical Descriptions

Screen print
76.2 x 91.4 cm (30 x 36 in.)
frame: 84.1 x 104.5 x 3.2 cm (33 1/8 x 41 1/8 x 1 1/4 in.)
Inscriptions and Marks
  • Signed: l.r.: Sister Mary Corita IHM
  • inscription: Printed quote reads: TENDER / So yes, I think Mary laughed out loud -—she laughed whole heartedly, without rancor, and with great compassion, and with real reverence. If she were here today in her physical nature she would surely laugh. She would laugh at our wreaths; she would laugh at our pop art; she would laugh — compassionately — at the consternation of some of us at this riot of sound and color, at our uncertainty about its suitability for a day of religious celebration. Frankly, I think May would want this day, that she would like to think that it was well explained by calling it her day. She is the cause of our joy — and I hope that we bring her joy by praising her with our hearts on high. If we were only loud and bright, perhaps we could hope only for the indulgent smile of the mother of very small children. Our colors, however are the colors of the market place, the colors of life-giving food, and our sounds are the sounds of the here and now, and they are meant to say: mother, I am concerned for my brother, who is your son. My brother starves, he weeps, he dies. He is myself. Today is a loud call to our mother asking her to teach us what she knows of filling the emptiness, drying the tears, and easing the death of our brother. We ask to be taken out of ourselves (this is the whole burden of "Pacem in Terris"). Words from Sr. William on Mary's Day 1964


Recorded Ownership History
[Susan Lawrence Fine Art, Kansas City, MO], sold; to the Harvard Art Museums, 2012.

State, Edition, Standard Reference Number

Edition of 50
Standard Reference Number
Corita Art Center Cat. #64-22

Acquisition and Rights

Credit Line
Harvard Art Museums/Fogg Museum, Margaret Fisher Fund
© Courtesy of the Corita Art Center, Immaculate Heart Community, Los Angeles / Artists Rights Society (ARS), New York
Accession Year
Object Number
Modern and Contemporary Art

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Publication History

  • Susan Dackerman, ed., Corita Kent and the Language of Pop, exh. cat., Harvard Art Museums (Cambridge, MA, 2015), pp. 152-154, cat. 36, ill. (color)

Exhibition History

Verification Level

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