Helen Kohnke '10

Helen Kohnke
McGehee Class of 2010

Helen Kohnke finds inspiration in the simple yet intricate elements of the natural world. With an abstract approach, this talented artist paints her subject the same way she experiences it. Dissecting fragments of light, shape, and color, she reveals a heightened focus on the tangible world. Helen demonstrates a vulnerable relationship with mother nature and encourages her viewers to get present.

When asked about her McGehee experience, Helen said, “McGehee was the most nurturing environment for a creative, alternative learner like myself. I struggled with dyslexia but found my niche in art. McGehee had an incredible art program where I was able to explore sculpture, ceramics, printmaking, painting, and drawing starting at an early age.” She said, “the thing I loved about art was that there was no right or wrong answer. Black and White Photography with Jennifer Shaw was when I truly understood the power of self-expression. McGehee was, and still is, one of the few institutions in New Orleans that has a dark room.  The boundaries for artistic expression were endless, and the freedom was exciting. McGehee provided me with all the resources I needed, and I knew that I wanted to pursue art as I embarked upon college.”


Helen Kohnke '10

There is something really magical about the history and traditions of McGehee. Singing on the Stairs, Red vs. Grey competitions, and May Day — all things that my grandmother participated in when she went to McGehee. She walked through the same gate everyday and went to class in the Bradish Johnson home just like did. I really felt a rooted connection to McGehee, like I was at home with all my sisters - and those who had been there before me.
2343 Prytania Street
New Orleans, LA 70130
Louise S. McGehee School is a private independent all-girls school for Pre-K through grade 12 and open to all qualified girls regardless of race, religion, national or ethnic origin.