Dec. 26 (UPI) -- Television critic and art historian Sister Wendy Beckett died Wednesday at the age of 88.
Beckett, a nun who left a life of solitude to take on a career as a presenter on British television, died at 9:30 a.m. at the Carmelite Monastery in Quidenham, the BBC reported.
"She was a hugely popular BBC presenter and will be fondly remembered by us all," BBC director of arts Jonty Claypole said.
Claypole added Beckett had "a unique presentation style, a deep knowledge of and passion for the arts."
Beckett was born in South Africa and moved to Edinburgh as a child, where she joined a convent at the age of 16.
In 1950, Beckett's order sent her to Oxford University, where she as awarded a Congratulatory First Class degree in English literature, before returning to South Africa to teach
She was later granted permission to pursue a life of solitude and prayer in 1970 due to her ailing health and was also permitted to study art in the 1980s.
After her studies Beckett published the book Contemporary Women Artists in 1988 and went on to write more books and articles before commissioned by the BBC to present a television documentary on the National Gallery in London.
Beckett went on to host her first series for the network -- Sister Wendy's Odyssey -- in 1991, followed by Sister Wendy's Grand Tour and Sister Wendy's Story of Painting.
Throughout these programs Beckett described and critiqued art in a personal and conversational manner, endearing herself to audiences by delivering succinct ad-lib analyses while dressed in her black nun's robes.
She maintained her dedication to the clergy and continued to wear her homemade black habit after being released from her vows as a Sister of Notre Dame and changing her religious status to "consecrated virgin" in the 1970s.
"I am a nun. I will always be a nun," she said.