Philip Guston: A Life Lived


Date/Time: Sunday, Aug 18 | Film 2–3pm; Talk 3:10–4:30pm
Admission: Free with Museum admission Get Tickets
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About the Program

 Narrated by the artist, Philip Guston: A Life Lived was filmed as the artist organized his 1980 retrospective at SFMOMA. Mixing footage shot in San Francisco and at the artist's Woodstock studio, this film captures Guston speaking candidly about his philosophy of painting and life (58 min, 1981). Following the film, poet and art scholar Bill Berkson discusses Guston’s work in the context of the exhibition Beyond Belief: 100 Years of the Spiritual in Modern Art.  Berkson will also share personal stories of a longtime professional and personal relationship with the artist.


Poet and critic Bill Berkson is Professor Emeritus at the San Francisco Art Institute, a contributing poetry editor for, and a corresponding editor for Art in America. His most recent books include Portrait and Dream: New & Selected Poems; Not an Exit, with drawings by Léonie Guyer; Repeat After Me, with watercolors by John Zurier; and a collection of art writings, For the Ordinary Artist. His previous collection of art writings, The Sweet Singer of Modernism, appeared in 2004. He was the Paul Mellon Distinguished Fellow at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture for 2006 and awarded the Goldie for Literature by the San Francisco Bay Guardian in 2009.



Public Programs and New Media Initiatives at the CJM are made possible with lead support from The Jim Joseph Foundation. Major support has been provided by the Leavitt Family and supporting sponsorship comes from The Toole Family Charitable Foundation, David B. Gold Foundation, In Memory of Benjamin Alpert, and Alyse Mason Brill and Nathan Brill.




736 Mission Street (btwn. 3rd and 4th Streets), San Francisco, CA 94103 | Hours: Daily 11am–5pm, Thursdays 11am–8pm, Closed Wednesdays | 415.655.7800 |