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Grabhorn Institute 2009 Spring Benefit Dinner

Guest of Honor: Stephen Shore, photographer


About the Benefit Dinner

The annual Grabhorn Institute Spring Benefit Dinner at Arion Press will be held on Wednesday, April 22, 2009 at 6 p.m. We are delighted that well-known New York photographer Stephen Shore will be guest of honor this year.

The Benefit is a sit-down dinner for 140 held here in the Arion Press gallery, preceded by cocktails in the pressroom and tours of the production areas. It is known for the excellence of the food and wine, the wit of the artist's remarks, and the brevity of other speeches. The program will include remarks by Stephen Shore and SFMOMA photography curator Sandra S. Phillips. We do not interrupt dinner conversation with an auction or other fundraising gimmicks, and we rely on our loyal supporters to make the dinner a success.

This will be the seventh year that we have held the Benefit Dinner. Past years’ special guests have included artists John Baldessari, Martin Puryear, Wayne Thiebaud, and Jim Dine. Among our underwriters have been such distinctive businesses as Chronicle Books, Ridge Vineyards, Anchor Brewing Company, and Peet’s Coffee & Tea.

The generosity of our benefit guests supports Grabhorn Institute programs in preservation and education, including apprenticeships in typecasting, printing, and bookbinding, as well as our tours, lecture series, and gallery exhibitions. The Grabhorn Institute is a 501(c)(3) organization. Contributions to it are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law. The non-tax-deductible portion of each dinner is $40.

About the Artist: Stephen Shore

Stephen Shore is one of the foremost American artists in the field of photography. His talent was recognized by Edward Steichen when he was only fourteen. In 1971 he was the first living photographer to have a one-man show at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Currently, his work is included in an exhibition at the Fraenkel Gallery in San Francisco, “Edward Hopper & Company”. Stephen Shore is the recipient of fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation and the American Academy in Rome. He is professor and director of the Photography Program at Bard College. In 2004, Shore illustrated the Arion Press edition of The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton with thirty-four photographs. The book and photographs are available for sale.

Special Offering: Stephen Shore Photographs

In September 2004, when the Arion Press limited edition of Edith Wharton's The Age of Innocence was published, Stephen Shore came to San Francisco for the party celebrating the book and his color digital photographs of sites in New York City and environs that figure in the novel. He was fascinated by the equipment in our historic fine printing and book-making facility. Shore used a Nikon D70 digital single-lens reflex to take 48 color photographs of machinery, tools, and materials. Of these photographs Shore selected five images and has given three prints of each (out of a maximum edition of eight) to the Grabhorn Institute for fund-raising purposes. The images are 10 by 15 inches, landscape format, on paper 16 by 20 inches. These signed prints are offered for sale at $2,500 each. All sales benefit the Grabhorn Institute. We are grateful to the artist for this generous contribution. The photographs are of the following subjects:

  1. Matrices for casting italic capitals on a Monotype Supercaster, in the typefoundry.
  2. Vandercook Universal III proof press, ink roller, bed with rule lock-up, in the composing room.
  3. Thomson Laureate platen press, 14 x 22 inches, counterweight, in the pressroom.
  4. Miller two-color cylinder press, 21 x 28 inches, counting machine, in the pressroom.
  5. Backing press, in the bookbindery.

If you would like to reserve or purchase a signed Stephen Shore color photograph
in the “Printing Equipment” series, please submit the following form:

Photograph Reservation Form

Stephen Shore photograph Stephen Shore photograph Stephen Shore photograph Stephen Shore photograph Stephen Shore photograph

Benefit Dinner Reservations

Individual places are priced at $275. Tables are available at $3,000, $5,000, and $10,000 sponsorship levels. Contributions to the Grabhorn Institute Dinner are tax-deductible excepting $40 per dinner. Purchases of Stephen Shore photographs benefit the Institute but are not tax-deductible. You may purchase tickets and tables securely online now, or submit a benefit reservation form with payment.

Individual ticket $275.
Purchase now:
Supporter: $3,000.
Table of 8
Purchase now:
Patron: $5,000.
Table of 10
Purchase now:
Angel: $10,000.
Table of 10
Purchase now:

If you would prefer to pay offline, please download, complete,
and return the benefit reservation card:

Benefit Reservation Card


If you cannot attend the Benefit Dinner, please consider making a contribution to the non-profit Grabhorn Institute in lieu of purchasing a ticket. Contributions are tax-deductible to the full extent of the law. You may contribute securely online, or by printing and mailing the contribution form.

Contribution form

Or donate securely online now with PayPal:

Your gift will be acknowledged with a letter of thanks for tax purposes.


Go west on Lake Street, turn right (north) on Fifteenth Avenue, and enter the Presidio. To the right of the large hospital currently under construction is a tall smokestack, which is attached to 1802 Hays Street (in the Presidio). Follow the road up and around to the left. Parking is available in front of our building. For more detailed directions, click here.

For a full listing of Grabhorn Institute lectures and other events, please see our Events page. Also see photos of recent events.


For questions, suggestions, or to discuss making a contribution to the Grabhorn Institute, please contact Andrew Hoyem or Diana Ketcham at:

Grabhorn Institute
1802 Hays Street, The Presidio
San Francisco, CA 94129
Telephone: 415-668-2548
Fax: 415-668-2550
Web site:






Individual ticket: $275. Order individual tickets securely online now:

Supporter: $3,000. Table of eight, with recognition in the dinner program. Sponsor a Supporter table securely online now:

Patron: $5,000. Table of ten, with recognition in the dinner program. Sponsor a Patron table securely online now:

Angel: $10,000. Table of ten, with recognition in the dinner program, thanks from the podium, and gift. Sponsor an Angel table securely online now:

You may also click here to submit an online reservation form for the 2009 Benefit Dinner and pay offline:

Reserve your seats

Recognition for
the Grabhorn Institute

An irreplaceable legacy
The Grabhorn Institute is designated by the National Trust for Historic Preservation as part of "the nation's irreplaceable historical and cultural legacy" under its Save America's Treasures program, in recognition of the Institute's work to preserve the typecasting and letterpress printing operation of Arion Press and M & H Type.

“There is now no other business like it anywhere in the world. You are, so far as I know, truly unique in the literal and only sense of the word.” –Richard Lawrence, Oxford, England

Journeyman Kenny Howard working with apprentice Brian Ferrett

Journeyman Kenny Howard and apprentice Brian Ferrett in the composing room

Praise for The Age of Innocence

"Bibliophiles will now have to make space for Arion's latest creation – a limited edition of Edith Wharton's Pulitzer Prize-winning The Age of Innocence. The book's 34 digital images from photographer Stephen Shore take readers back to turn-of-the-century New York, as the backdrop for polite conversations masking cruel words. But it is the book as a whole, with its period Ronaldson Old Style type-from Arion's world-renowned collection, Potlatch Vintage paper for Shore's work, full-cloth binding over boards and slipcase wrapped with a photograph of Central Park that truly make it a thing of beauty. The Arion Press will print just 400 copies of this edition. Cruel words indeed."
– Stephanie Cooperman, Forbes, April 7, 2005

Seamus Heaney reading from his poetry in the gallery

Nobel Prize winning poet Seamus Heaney reading in the gallery, May 2006

“Arion Press books are the gold standard for fine presses today.” –Peter Kraus, Ursus Books, New York.

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Virtual Panoramic Tour
Browse panoramic images of the pressroom, typefoundry, book bindery, and gallery. View now.