Antonino D'Ambrosio

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Antonino Pasquale D'Ambrosio (born June 23, 1971), is an Italian-American author, filmmaker, producer, and visual artist. D'Ambrosio's multimedia feature documentary film Let Fury Have the Hour (2012) was featured in the Spotlight section of the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival.[1] In 2015, Sony Music Masterworks will release D'Ambrosio's We're Still Here: Johnny Cash's Bitter Tears Revisited, a feature documentary based on D'Ambrosio book A Heartbeat and a Guitar: Johnny Cash and the Making of Bitter Tears.[2]

Author/Filmmaker/Visual Artist Antonino D'Ambrosio.


D'Ambrosio is the author of Let Fury Have the Hour: Joe Strummer, Punk and the Movement that Shook the World (2012), the second volume of which the first is 'Let Fury Have the Hour: The Punk Rock Politics of Joe Strummer, (2004) and A Heartbeat and a Guitar: Johnny Cash and the Making of Bitter Tears. (2009) A Heartbeat and a Guitar was chosen by The Philadelphia Inquirer as a "2009 Book of Note,",[3] The Progressive "Favorite Book",[4] The Boston Globe,[5] among others. In 2010, D'Ambrosio collaborated with artist Shepard Fairey on the book Mayday.[6]

Film and video[edit]

D'Ambrosio has produced more than 15 documentaries, films, videos, and visual art pieces. His recent film includes No Free Lunch starring Lewis Black. In September 2008, it received a notice of cultural distinction in Vanity Fair.[7]

D'Ambrosio is the producer, writer and director of the feature film Let Fury Have the Hour. The film was an Official Selection of the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival. The film was received positively by The New York Times and Time Out New York's Joshua Rothkopf, Indiewire,[8] PBS's POV,[9] The Huffington Post,[10] Complex magazine,[11] and COOL magazine.[12]

D'Ambrosio received support from Rob McKay of the McKay Foundation and Democracy Alliance[13] for production of a documentary film based on Let Fury Have the Hour chronicling the movement of world citizenship.[14] The film has many musical contributions from artists including Chuck D, Antibalas Afrobeat Orchestra, Ocote Soul Sounds, Sean Hayes, Tommy Guerrero, Boots Riley, Tom Morello, Wayne Kramer, Billy Bragg and others.[15] The film also features many of today's most creative thinkers and artists including playwright Eve Ensler, author Edwidge Danticat, scientist Jonah Lehrer, novelist Hari Kunzru, international human rights advocate Jack Healey, choreographer Elizabeth Streb, poets Staceyann Chin and Suheir Hammad, environmentalist Van Jones, and more.

The film's score was composed by Wayne Kramer. The film includes original artwork from Shepard Fairey and animation by Seth Tobocman.[16]

La Lutta NMC[edit]

In 1997 D'Ambrosio founded La Lutta New Media Collective, a non-profit social media and documentary production group. La Lutta NMC has worked with more than 800 groups around the world on various media projects, and maintains a membership of over 20,000. The late Neil Postman served as an adviser and honorary first board member during the early stages of the group's development. The Nation selected La Lutta NMC as one of the top independent media groups in the country.[17]

With La Lutta NMC, D'Ambrosio has produced a series of creative-activist events and performances including Speak the Words the Way You Breathe featuring the hip-hop group The Last Poets.[18]

Visual art and exhibitions[edit]

  • A Furious Heartbeat presented by Antonino D'Ambrosio and Shepard Fairey, Subliminal Art Project, Los Angeles, CA December 2009
  • La Terra Promessa Center for Contemporary Art, Santa Fe, NMC April 2009[19]
  • This Is A Movement (2003–04)
  • Speak the Words the Way You Breathe (1999-2003)

Other work[edit]

In 2014, Sony Music Masterworks released Look Again to the Wind: Johnny Cash's Bitter Tears Revisited, inspired by Antonino D'Ambrosio's book A Heartbeat and a Guitar Johnny Cash and the Making of Bitter Tears.[20] Produced by Joe Henry and executive by Antonino D'Ambrosio, Look Again to the Wind features musicians Emmylou Harris, Steve Earle, Kris Kristofferson, Norman and Nancy Blake, Rhiannon Giddons, The Milk Carton Kids, Bill Miller, Dave Rawlings, and Gillian Welch.[21] D'Ambrosio also contributed the liner notes "Everything or Nothing".[22]

In 2013, D'Ambrosio served as guest editor of a special issue of The Nation with the theme of his work creative-response.D'Ambrosio write the cover story "We Own the Future: How Creative-Response Transforms Our World." D'Ambrosio invited author Ediwdge Danticat, musician Billy Bragg, novelist Hari Kunzru, compose DJ Spooky, and poet Staceyann Chin to continue original essays on creative-response. D'Ambrosio longtime collaborator to create original cover art based on D'ambrosio idea of re-imagining artist Paul Klee's Angelus Novus.[23]

In 2010, artist Shepard Fairey invited D'Ambrosio to contribute the official essay for his solo-exhibit Mayday at the Deitch Projects in New York City.[24] The essay, "May Day Calling", is printed on the back of Fairey's signature "flag" print.[25]

In 2009, D'Ambrosio was Artist-In-Residence at the Center for Contemporary Arts in Santa Fe, NM where he launched the multimedia land-art installation La Terra Promessa: In Sun & Shadow.[19]

In 2008, D'Ambrosio was featured on Clash: Revolution Rock, an hour-long radio show also featuring musician Tom Morello of Rage Against the Machine.[26]

In 2006, he became New York University's Gallatin Lecturer, an honor bestowed upon a contemporary artist creating innovative and social engaging work.[27]

In 2006 D'Ambrosio was invited to document the Poor People's Economic Human Rights Campaign in Caracas, Venezuela at the World Social Forum.[28] His short film documenting the experience, In the Land of Bolivar, has been screened around the world. In 2005, D'Ambrosio was Artist-In-Residence in the Media Arts Department at Long Island University, Brooklyn Campus. He speaks extensively at universities and colleges throughout the country.



Selected Articles[edit]


  • Fever Pitch. Publisher. (2004–2005)
  • DISPATCH On-Line Indy News Journal. Publisher (2001–2003)


  • Speak the Words the Way You Breathe" (2014) Writer/Producer/Director.
  • We're Still Here: Johnny Cash's Bitter Tears Revisited" (2014) Writer/Producer/Director.
  • Let Fury Have the Hour" (2012) Writer/Producer/Director.
  • Making Waves, Breaking Walls: The Story of Radio Atlantis. A Project of La Lutta NMC's Youth-Artist-in-Residency Program. (2009) Executive Producer. 12 mins.
  • No Free Lunch (starring Lewis Black). (2008). Producer/writer/director. 7 mins.
  • Project 843: A Documentary Series on the cultural Impact of Central Park. (2007–present) Executive producer and supervising director.
  • In the Land of Bolivar. (2006). Writer, producer, photographer, and director. 10 mins.
  • Battlescars. (2006). Production Consultant. 30 mins.
  • Freedom Demo: The RNC Counter Convention. (2004) Producer, photographer, and editor. 25 mins.
  • Desaparecidos: Our History Oral History Project. (2004). Writer, producer, photographer, director and editor. 55 mins.
  • One Judge, One Family. (2004). Writer, producer, photographer, director, and editor. 17 mins.
  • The Treatment Court Story. (2002) Writer, producer, photographer, director, editor. 15 mins.
  • The Contract and Beyond. New York City Transit Workers Move Forward. (2002)Writer, producer, photographer, director, and editor. 25 mins.
  • Road to the Contract: New York City Transit Worker's Documentary Series
  • Struggle for a New Contract. (2002) Writer, producer, photographer, director, and editor. 25 mins.
  • Back in the Days: A Time before Crack. (2000) Writer, producer, photographer, director, and editor. 30 mins.
  • Once there was a Village. (1999). Based on the book of the same name. Producer, photographer, director, and editor. 30 mins
  • Welfare Reform: Rollback or Removal? (1996). Writer, producer, photographer, director, and editor. 30 mins.


  • (2009) Belmont Book Award (nominated).
  • (2009) Artist-In-Residence. Center for Contemporary Arts. Santa Few, New Mexico
  • (2008) Nation Institute Investigative Fund Award. Award to support investigative work on book project A Heartbeat and A Guitar
  • (2006) New York University Gallatin Lecturer. An honor bestowed upon a contemporary artist creating innovative and socially engaging work.
  • (2005) Artist-In-Residence, Long Island University Media Arts Department. An honor awarded to an artist producing dynamic and noteworthy new media.
  • (2005) Top Non-Fiction Book Selections of 2005. Awarded by PBS to non-fiction writers who published work that could be used as an educational tool in the classroom.
  • (2003) Digital-Artist-In-Residence (Given to La Lutta NMC). Awarded to emerging and established web artists working in the area of documenting the immigrant experience.
  • (1999) Top Independent Media Makers. Awarded by The Nation readers to those individuals creating media that advances democracy.
  • (1998) Community Service Award of Distinction. Awarded by the El Puente Center for Arts and Culture for support of youth-community public space mural initiative.
  • (1998) Community Arts Grant. Awarded by the Manhattan Borough President's Office, New York City.
  • (1995) Deans' Scholar. Awarded every 2 years to 20 New York University students demonstrating academic excellence, a strong social consciousness, and a vibrant creative sensibility.

External links[edit]


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  5. ^ Reed, James (December 8, 2009). "Cash's lost treasure". The Boston Globe. 
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  10. ^ Rothe, E. Nina (April 26, 2012). "A (Slideshow) Talk with Antonino D'Ambrosio of Let Fury Have the Hour". Huffington Post. 
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