'If It's In The World, It's For Me'

Amna Khalid's Extended Interview with Dewey Crumpler


In Episode One of Banished, we covered the controversy around Victor Arnautoff's murals, “Life of Washington” — a series of 13 paintings that cover the entrance and the hallway of George Washington High School in San Francisco.

One of the voices in the episode was Professor Dewey Crumpler, an artist who was commissioned to paint so-called “response” murals to Arnautoff’s in the late 1960s when “Life of Washington” first became controversial. In this extended interview, Crumpler waxes lyrical not just about the mural controversy, but also about the place of art in society.

“The most important place for young people to confront difficulty is in high school just before you get into the world,” Crumpler told us. “If it’s in the world, it’s for me. If it’s in the world, I have a right to know it. I have a right to experience it. And it’s my youth that helps prepare me for it, even though it will be problematic. That’s how we learn to overcome the difficulties.”

Normally, extended guest interviews will only be available to paying subscribers, but we’re sharing this one with all of you to give you a taste of the kind of content you can expect if you subscribe to Booksmart Studios.