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Artist, activist, and former nun, Irma Wagner of Jamaica Plain, dies at age 81

Ms. Wagner advocated for the poor and downtrodden. Her block prints, along with poetry and prose of those she admired, were featured in calendars she produced.
Ms. Wagner advocated for the poor and downtrodden. Her block prints, along with poetry and prose of those she admired, were featured in calendars she produced.

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When artist Irma Wagner was diagnosed 12 years ago with Parkinson’s disease, she carried on the way friends knew she would, as usual.

She continued to turn out exquisite calendars, which she did from 1996 to 2010, that featured her block prints, which she paired with the poetry and prose of authors, activists, and artists she admired, from Helen Keller to Albert Einstein.

Ms. Wagner, a former nun who advocated for the poor and downtrodden and strongly opposed the Vietnam War, died April 28 at her apartment in the Jamaica Plain three-decker where she had lived for 36 years. She was 81.

A service will be held June 29 at 10 a.m. at First Church Unitarian Universalist in Jamaica Plain, preceded by a walk through Arnold Arboretum.

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