James Crump is a curator, writer, scholar and art advisor. He is the author or co-author of numerous books and has published widely in the fields of contemporary art and history of photography.
Crump is known internationally for his work with contemporary artists and photographers. From 2010 to 2013 he was Chief Curator at the Cincinnati Art Museum where he produced a number of high-profile exhibitions. He has collaborated with several museums and galleries, including Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, International Center of Photography, the Grey Art Gallery of NYU and The Drawing Center in New York, Princeton University Art Museum, Huis Marseille, Amsterdam and Die Photographische Sammlung/SK Stiftung Kultur, Cologne, Germany. In addition to publishing the first monographs of Adam Fuss, Vik Muniz, Nadav Kander, and Robert Maxwell, he has organized exhibitions or published books with such established artists as James Welling, Doug and Mike Starn, Doug Aitken, Richard Misrach, Nan Goldin, Ross Bleckner, Lynn Davis, and the estates of Berenice Abbott, Robert Mapplethorpe, Carlo Mollino, Willem de Kooning, Garry Winogrand, and Walker Evans.
Crump’s work has been widely published, most recently in Aperture, Archives of American Art Journal for the Smithsonian Museum, Art Review, Art in America, Print, and History of Photography. Prior to completing his Ph.D. in history of art, with Dr. Eugenia Parry as his chief advisor at the University of New Mexico, Crump was Associate Curator of Photography at the Kinsey Institute, Indiana University, where he oversaw a collection of over 50,000 photographic prints and organized the acclaimed exhibition George Platt Lynes: Photographs from the Kinsey Institute. From 1996 to 2003, Crump was founding director and CEO of Arena Editions, a pioneer in the competitive space for illustrated books. Crump wrote, produced and directed the documentary film, Black White + Gray, featuring the influential and legendary art collector Sam Wagstaff and artist Robert Mapplethorpe. The film premiered at the 2007 New York-based Tribeca Film Festival and Europe’s Art Basel; it began airing on the Sundance Channel in March 2008. Black White + Gray was named one of the 100 Best Films of 2008 by The Times, London.
Black White + Gray: A Portrait of Sam Wagstaff and Robert Mapplethorpe
Crump directed the feature-length documentary film Black White + Gray: A Portrait of Sam Wagstaff + Robert Mapplethorpe, which premiered in North America at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival and in Europe at Art Basel. It explores the influence curator Sam Wagstaff, photographer Robert Mapplethorpe and musician/poet Patti Smith had on the 1970s art scene in New York City.
- (2013) James Welling: Monograph. Aperture. ISBN 978-1597112093
- (2012) Doug and Mike Starn: Gravity of Light. Skira Rizzoli. ISBN 978-0-8478-3897-4.
- (2010) Walker Evans: Decade by Decade. Hatje Cantz. ISBN 978-3-7757-2491-3.
- (2009) Variety: Photographs by Nan Goldin. Skira Rizzoli. ISBN 978-0-8478-3255-2.
- (1995) F. Holland Day: Suffering the Ideal. Twin Palms Publishers. ISBN 978-0-944092-33-0.
- (1993) George Platt Lynes: Photographs from the Kinsey Institute. Bulfinch Press/Little Brown & Co. ISBN 978-0-8212-1996-6.
- (2013) It's Modern: The Eye and Visual Influence of Alexander Liberman. Rizzoli. ISBN 978-0847840717.
- (2012) Herb Ritts: L.A. Style. J. Paul Getty Museum. ISBN 978-1-60606-100-8.
- (2011) High Heels: Fashion, Femininity and Seduction. Thames & Hudson. ISBN 978-0-500-51572-3.
- (2010) Starburst: Color Photography in America 1970–1980. Hatje Cantz. ISBN 978-3-7757-2490-6.
- (2004) Meridel Rubenstein: Belonging: Los Alamos to Vietnam. St. Ann's Press. ISBN 978-0-9753302-0-3.
- (1998) When We Were Three: The Travel Albums of George Platt Lynes, Monroe Wheeler and Glenway Wescott. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-0-9657280-4-1.
- (1994) Harm's Way: Lust & Madness, Murder & Mahem. Twin Palms Publishers. ISBN 978-0-944092-28-6.
Select Books (Editor/Publisher)
- (2002) Garry Winogrand: 1964. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-62-3.
- (2002) Berenice Abbott/Eugène Atget. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-63-0.
- (2002) Carlo Mollino: Polaroids. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-60-9.
- (2001) Robert Mapplethorpe: Autoportrait. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-41-8.
- (2001) Richard Misrach: Golden Gate. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-41-8.
- (2000) Nadav Kander: Beauty's Nothing. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-40-1.
- (2000) Richard Misrach: Sky Book. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-28-9.
- (2000) Walker Evans: The Lost Work. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-29-6.
- (1999) Bruce Weber: Chop Suey Club. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-19-7.
- (1999) Peter Beard: Fifty Years of Portraits. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-15-9.
- (1999) Robert Mapplethorpe: Pictures. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-16-6.
- (1998) Ross Bleckner: Watercolor. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-0-9657280-9-6.
- (1998) Lynn Davis: Monument. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-07-4.
- (1998) Willem de Kooning: Drawing Seeing/Seeing Drawing. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-0-9657280-8-9
- (1998) Vik Muniz: Seeing is Believing. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-892041-00-5.
- (1997) Adam Fuss. Arena Editions. ISBN 978-1-891024-91-7.
- Eyemazing, Artists Issue No. 3 (Autumn 2009) Garry Winogrand: Women Are Beautiful: Interview with James Crump
- Art Journal, Vol. 53, No. 2 (Summer 1994) Exhibition Review, Personality versus Physique by Melody D. Davis
- The New York Times, Charles Hagen reviews the exhibition George Platt Lynes: Photographs from the Kinsey Institute
- Vanity Fair (October 2000), "South by Southwest: Arena Draws a Crowd," by Riza Cruz
- Santa Fe New Mexican, (July 6-12, 2001) James Crump: Keep the Book, Throw Out the Coffee Table
- Arena Editions Catalogue, (Autumn, 2002)
- Arena Editions, ISBNdb
- Tribeca Film Festival Guide, David Kwok introduces Black White + Gray: A Portrait of Sam Wagstaff + Robert Mapplethorpe
- The Times (London), "The 100 Best Films of 2008"
- Library Journal, Walker Evans: Decade by Decade book review by Douglas F. Smith
- Conscientious, Walker Evans: Decade by Decade book review by Jörg M. Colberg
- Vanity Fair, Walker Evans: Decade by Decade by Lenora Jane Estes
- Photo District News Notable Books of 2009
- photo-eye Magazine Review: Variety by Douglas Stockdale
- Planet°, Sarah Coleman on Variety
- Times Literary Supplement (London), March 1, 1996, "Uranian, Ukrainian," Will Eames reviews F. Holland Day: Suffering the Ideal
- Interview Magazine (April 1996) "A New Day for an Old Tale," Brad Goldfarb on F. Holland Day: Suffering the Ideal
- Daily Beast, The Kings of Kodachrome by Philip Gefter
- NPR, The Crusade for Color by Claire O'Neill
- The New York Times Book Review, Christopher Benfey reviews When We Were Three: The Travel Albums of George Platt Lynes, Monroe Wheeler and Glenway Wescott
- Voice, January 19, 1999, "Photo Finish" by Vince Aletti
- The New York Times Book Review, Andy Grundberg reviews Harm's Way
- Washington Post, Garry Winogrand: Huge Influence, Early Exit by Frank Van Riper
- Art Journal, Vol. 63, No. 3 (Autumn 2004) The Evans File by Benjamin Lima
- The New York Times Book Review, Andy Grundberg reviews Adam Fuss
- Official site for James Crump
- "A Collector and His Polaroid Passions" by Stephen Holden for The New York Times
- Philip Gefter on Black White + Gray for The New York Times
- James Crump at the Internet Movie Database
- Official site for Black White + Gray
- Variety Magazine Review of Black White + Gray
- Jesse Ashlock Interviews James Crump for The Tribeca Film Festival
- Black Book, Nick Haramis, Because the Night: Robert Mapplethorpe Remembered (June 22, 2008)