During the 2021 ANTIQUES ROADSHOW visit to Colonial Williamsburg, a guest named Penny brought a circa 1965 “Power Up” serigraph of Sister Mary Corita Kent. Kent was a prolific artist who created nearly 800 different serigraphs, an art printing technique that uses screen printing, stencils, and different colored inks to create an image on paper. She gained influence throughout the 1960s and worked to incorporate bright colors, pop culture, and inexpensive processes into her art to help share religious ideas in a contemporary and affordable way for the masses.
Prints & Posters reviewer Nicho Lowry explained that “the phrase ‘Power Up’ was taken from the slogan of the Richfield Oil Company and adapted to suggest a higher spiritual meaning. She was also influenced by Andy Warhol and the Pop Art movement, which she would combine with religious ideas and often quote famous pastors. This particular poster features a spiritual quote from Rainer Maria Rilkea well-known Austrian poet, based on his book Letters to a young poet.”
Penny was able to acquire the small piece in the mid-1960s at an art show at Immaculate Heart of Mary College in Los Angeles for $35, though she assumed she couldn’t afford the piece. art. Lowry remarked, “It was such a surprise to you that it was affordable, but you really must have made her so happy because it was exactly what she wanted from her job.”
Lowry placed an auction estimate of $1,500 to $2,000 on the silkscreen.
Read the full quote below:
quote from Letters to a young poet1929, by Rainer Maria Rilke
Why don’t you consider him as the one who is coming, imminent from all eternity, the future, the last fruit of a tree of which we are the leaves? What prevents you from projecting his birth into times in the making, and from living your life as a beautiful and painful day in the history of a great gestation? For don’t you see how everything that happens continues to be a beginning and could it not be its beginning, since the beginning is in itself always so beautiful? Rilke.
Quote by Austrian poet Rainer Maria Rilke, from his book “Letters to a Young Poet”.