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" I cannot see my people developing, finding happiness, being secure, being free, being wonderfully lovely people, if they must have a white god...
….As a result, I feel that the greatest contribution I am making and I’ve made as an artist in St. Lucia, my monument, is that I’ve been able to start painting Christ, his mother and Joseph in the church as ‘blacks.’
Your god must be of you and you of your god.” -- 1977
Dunstan St. Omer
Sir The Honourable Dunstan St. Omer was born October 24, 1927 in Castries, St. Lucia. Sir Dunstan’s first mural, for the altar of Our Lady's Chapel at La Clery, was commissioned by Fr. Joseph Vrignaud. Sir Dunstan has painted murals throughout St. Lucia, including the notable Holy Family Mural at the Church of the Holy Family in Jacmel, Roseau (1973.) Sir Dunstan’s church murals have received acclaim and, at first, created controversy for his depictions of black divinity.
Sir Dunstan designed St Lucia's National Flag; he was awarded a Papal Medal by the Catholic Church and the St. Lucia Cross by the St. Lucia government on the island's 25th Anniversary of Independence. In 2007, the Folk Research Centre declared him a National Cultural Hero. In 2009 he received an honorary Doctor of Letters degree from the University of the West Indies, and in 2010 the Knight Commander of the Order of St. Michael and St. George (KCMG) was conferred on him in the New Year’s Honors of H.M Queen Elizabeth II. Sir Dunstan was married to Lady Cynthia St. Croix and together they had nine children. Sir Dunstan St. Omer passed away May 5, 2015. Rest In Peace, Beloved Friend.
Copyright St. Lucia Oral History. All rights reserved.