Tag Archives: Margaret Kilgallen

Art With Heart + Method Designed for Good

By now you already know about our love for Method. This fall, they have launched a collection of two limited edition ‘Pink Your Sink‘ hand wash bottles. It’s a small but wonderful gesture, and one we think can go a long way in support of the fight against breast cancer.

It’s a sad truth that I think every woman has a story about Breast Cancer—whether they have had a personal experience, have known someone who has suffered, or simply a story that has touched their lives. In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month this October, I wanted to share with you a story about one of my favorite artists: Margaret Kilgallen.

I have always felt a connection to her. I can remember the very first time I saw a piece of her artwork many many years ago. I was immediately drawn to the hand lettering and folky/vintage sensibility of the pieces. I thought she had such a cool and interesting style. I also loved that she was a grafitti artist, because there are so few women out there doing that. I had heard she was married to Barry McGee (aka TWIST) who is also an amazing artist (and graffiti artist ). I thought “Wow, they are the coolest couple EVER!” The two of them quickly rose to fame as leaders of the Mission School art movement that developed here in San Francisco in the late 90s. Both would go on to become pretty major players in the modern-day art world.

Margaret’s shows were often huge installations with massive images painted right onto the walls of the space. If you were lucky you could also spot her work throughout the city—guerilla style. Instead of the usual urban hipster angst, her influences were drawn from rural inspiration: hand-drawn signage, hobo train writing, and Appalachian banjo music:

In 2003 I became pregnant and for my birthday Greg took me to Vancouver for a little getaway. We went to the Vancouver Art Gallery which had a huge installation of her work. Surrounded by the bold, beautiful images, I was once again transfixed. As I sat on a small bench and read her bio, I was startled to realize she had passed away a few years ago. She was only 33. As tragic as it was, the story has an even more bittersweet turn. Margaret learned that she had developed breast cancer. It was at this time she also discovered that she was pregnant. As a result, she had to make the heartbreaking decision—continue with treatment or have the baby. She chose to have a child. Her little girl Asha was born on June 7. A few short weeks later on June 26, Margaret Kilgallen passed away in the arms of her husband Barry. Reading the story I was heartbroken and moved to tears. I can’t imagine having to make such a decision. And I can’t imagine what it must have been like for Barry—to lose your partner so soon after you both bring a chid into the world.

Margaret’s work is still extremely influential and so many artists have been inspired by her. Because of the nature of her work (grafitti-style and murals) there really isn’t a ton of her work flying around. We were really fortunate to purchase a piece of hers back in 2005 from Paulson Press. It was the first real “art” we have ever bought and we really treasure it.

A year ago I had my annual “lady exam” and had a brief scare with a suspicious lump. I remember sitting in the doctor’s office and suddenly felt like my world was about to unravel. We tend to take our health for granted, plowing through life. Thankfully I was fine. But many other women have a different end to their story….which is why I was so happy to hear that Method was joining in the cause to raise awareness for Breast Cancer.

Method believes in design as a force for good. It’s why they make products that are safe for people and the planet. It’s also why they’re using this season’s limited edition Designed For Good hand washes to help promote breast cancer awareness, and donating $10,000 to breast cancer research. Several organizations have been nomicated to receive these research funds, you can vote for them here.

Pop on over to see which organizations have the chance to benefit from a $10,000 gift from Method, and cast your vote! Winners wil be announced on 10/29.

As for the soaps themselve? Well, naturally they are both beautiful. And as always they come in planet friendly bottles and are available in two delicate scents: Botanical Garden and Mimosa Sun. They’re the perfect way for you to add a little sunshine to your sink during these cooler months—and of course show your support!

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but all opinions are always our own. To read more on Method’s green practices, ingredients and philosophy, go here.