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An Insider’s Perspective

Kathan Brown, founding director, Crown Point Press. San Francisco’s Crown Point Press is one of the most influential printmaking studios of the last half century. The exhibition Yes, No, Maybe: Artists Working at Crown Point Press, on view at the National Gallery of Art from September 1, 2013, through January 5, 2014, features 125 working proofs and edition prints produced by 25 artists between 1972 and 2010. Yes, No, Maybe goes beyond celebrating the flash of inspiration and the role of the imagination to examine the artistic process as a sequence of decisions. Kathan Brown, founding director of Crown Point Press, offers an insider’s perspective to running this business—full of stories about art and artists—in this lecture recorded on December 8, 2013. Highlighting the exhibition’s major theme, Brown shares recordings of artists’ voices describing their working process: Robert Bechtle, John Cage, Chuck Close, Richard Diebenkorn, Tom Marioni, Chris Ofili, Kiki Smith, and Pat Steir. Brown also discusses her memoir, Know That You Are Lucky, drawing a connection between the creative process in printmaking and a meaningful life. (photo: Laurie Frankel)