James Crump

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James Crump
Crump, Los Angeles, 2018
Alma materIndiana University Bloomington
University of New Mexico
  • Director
  • producer
  • writer
Years active2004–present
Notable work
Black White + Gray, Troublemakers: The Story of Land Art, Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex Fashion & Disco

James Crump is an award-winning American film director, writer and producer and acclaimed art historian and curator whose recent films include Black White + Gray: A Portrait of Sam Wagstaff and Robert Mapplethorpe which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival; Troublemakers: The Story of Land Art which premiered at the New York Film Festival with The Wall Street Journal declaring "takes its place among the great art documentaries of the past half century"; and Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex Fashion & Disco, winner of the Metropolis Grand Jury Prize at the 2017 DOC NYC Film Festival.[1][2][3]

An acclaimed art historian and curator, Crump is also the author or co-author of numerous books and has published widely in the fields of modern and contemporary art.[4][5] His critical texts have appeared in ArtReview[6], Art in America[7], Artforum[8] and Archives of American Art Journal for the Smithsonian Museum[9], among numerous others. With artists Thomas Struth, Martha Rosler and Omer Fast among others, Crump presented at the Museum of Modern Art's August Sander Project: 2017 [10]


Crump earned a Master of Arts and Ph.D in history of art respectively at Indiana University (1993) and University of New Mexico (1996). He has collaborated with a host of museums and galleries, including Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin[11], Hammer Museum, Los Angeles[12], the Grey Art Gallery of NYU[13], Princeton University Art Museum[14] and Huis Marseille, Amsterdam.[15] He has organized exhibitions or published books with James Welling[16], Doug and Mike Starn[17], Nan Goldin[18], Ross Bleckner, Lynn Davis, and the estates of Berenice Abbott, Robert Mapplethorpe[19], Carlo Mollino[20], Willem de Kooning, Garry Winogrand,[21] and Walker Evans.


Black White + Gray: A Portrait of Sam Wagstaff and Robert Mapplethorpe[edit]

Crump directed the feature-length documentary film Black White + Gray: A Portrait of Sam Wagstaff and Robert Mapplethorpe , which premiered in North America at the 2007 Tribeca Film Festival and in Europe at Art Basel.[22][23][24][25][26] It explores the influence curator Sam Wagstaff, photographer Robert Mapplethorpe and musician/poet Patti Smith had on art in New York City in the 1970s. It began airing on the Sundance Channel in March 2008.

Troublemakers: The Story of Land Art[edit]

Crump wrote, produced and directed Troublemakers: The Story of Land Art.[27][28][29][30] Set in the desolate desert spaces of the American southwest, this feature documentary film unearths the history of land art during the tumultuous late 1960s and early 1970s. Troublemakers was one of twelve documentary films selected by the 53rd New York Film Festival, September 25–October 11, 2015.[31][32] The film released theatrically at IFC Center, New York, January 8, 2016.[33]

Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex Fashion & Disco[edit]

Written, produced and directed by Crump, this documentary film concerns Antonio Lopez (1943-1987), the Puerto Rican-born, Harlem- and Bronx-raised, bisexual fashion illustrator of 1970s New York and Paris, and his colorful and sometimes outrageous milieu.[34][35][36][37][38][39][40] Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex Fashion & Disco premiered at the 2017 BFI London Film Festival and subsequently was awarded the 2017 DOC NYC Metropolis Grand Jury Prize and the 2018 Cinéfashion Film Award for Best Fashion Feature Film. The film released theatrically in the United States at IFC Center, New York, September 14, 2018, Laemmle Theatres Royal Theatre, Los Angeles, September 21, 2018 and over twenty other major US markets[41][42][43] It became available on iTunes Store, Amazon Prime Video and Vudu January 2019 and subsequently began airing on the premium cable and satellite television network Starz May 2019.[44][45] The film qualified for consideration for the 2018 Academy Awards Oscar for Best Documentary Feature.[46]

Spit Earth: Who is Jordan Wolfson?[edit]

Crump's latest film, Spit Earth: Who is Jordan Wolfson? is a feature documentary which Artnet News called a "searing psychological portrait" of the controversial and divisive artist. Due to the conditions wrought on the film industry by the COVID-19 health crisis, the film was released worldwide on the leading streaming platforms May 1, 2020.[47][48][49]

Books (as author)[edit]

  • (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.[50][51][52]
  • (2009) Variety: Photographs by Nan Goldin. Skira Rizzoli. ISBN 978-0-8478-3255-2.[53][54][55]
  • (2007) Albert Watson. Phaidon Press Limited. ISBN 978-0-7148-4755-9.
  • (1995) F. Holland Day: Suffering the Ideal. Twin Palms Publishers. ISBN 978-0-944092-33-0.[56][57]
  • (1993) George Platt Lynes: Photographs from the Kinsey Institute. Bulfinch Press/Little Brown & Co. ISBN 978-0-8212-1996-6.

Books (as co-author)[edit]

Select books (as editor/publisher)[edit]


  1. ^ Eric Gibson, Troublemakers: The Story of Land Art Review, Wall Street Journal October 5, 2015
  2. ^ Stranger, Antonio Lopez 1970 win at DOC NYC by Daniele Alcinii in Realscreen, November 17 2017
  3. ^ IMDb James Crump Awards
  4. ^ Artforum, (December 2014), Michael Fried, Books: Nine Scholars, Curators, Writers, and Artists Choose the Year's Outstanding Books
  5. ^ James Crump, Museum Exhibition Catalogues, Monographs, Artist's Projects, Curatorial Writings and Essays, artbook@
  6. ^ James Crump, "To the Ends of the Earth," ArtReview, Vol. LIV, October 2004, pp. 79-85.
  7. ^ James Crump, "Photography: Visions the Eye Can't See," Art in America, Vol. 83, No. 3, March 1995, p. 61.
  8. ^ Laura Hoffmann, James Crump Discusses Troublemakers The Story of Land Art, Artforum, September 2, 2015
  9. ^ James Crump, "Art of Acquisition: The Eye of Sam Wagstaff," Archives of American Art Journal, Vol. 46, No. 3/4 (2007), pp. 4-13
  10. ^ The August Sander Project: 2017, Museum of Modern Art, September 15, 2017
  11. ^ Walker Evans. Ein Lebenswerk, 25. Juli bis 9. November 2014 im Martin-Gropius-Bau, Berlin
  12. ^ James Welling: Monograph, Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, September 29, 2013-January 12, 2014
  13. ^ Review/Photographer; Another Side of a Life's Work, Elegantly Revealed, Charles Hagen, New York Times, September 24, 1993
  14. ^ Starburst: Color Photography in America 1970-1980 @Princeton
  15. ^ Walker Evans / Decade by Decade, Huis Marseille Museum voor Fotografie, 22 June 2013-1 September 2013
  16. ^ James Crump, James Welling: Monograph (New York: Aperture, 2013)
  17. ^ James Crump (ed.) Doug + Mike Starn: Gravity of Light (New York, Rizzoli, 2012
  18. ^ James Crump, Variety: Photographs by Nan Goldin (New York: Skira Rizzoli, 2009)
  19. ^ Miss Rosen, "Remembering Robert Mapplethorpe Through Stories From Those Who Knew Him," AnotherMan, January 24, 2019.
  20. ^ Carlo Mollino: Polaroids, Artsy, October 17, 2014
  21. ^ Eyemazing, Artists Issue No. 3 (Autumn 2009) Garry Winogrand: Women Are Beautiful: Interview with James Crump
  22. ^ Earnest Hardy, Art Doc of the Week | Black White + Gray, CRAVEN, August 25, 2015
  23. ^ Stephen Holden, A Collector and His Polaroid Passions, The New York Times, October 19, 2007
  24. ^ Philip Gefter, The Man Who Made Mapplethorpe, The New York Times, April 24, 2007
  25. ^ Jay Weisberg, Review of Black White + Gray, Variety Magazine, May 7, 2007
  26. ^ Tribeca Film Festival Film Guide Archive
  27. ^ Su Wu, A New Documentary Sheds Light on the 'Troublemakers' of Land Art, T Magazine, May 4, 2015
  28. ^ Christopher Bollen, LandArt, Interview Magazine, August 2015
  29. ^ IMDb, Troublemakers: The Story of Land Art, 2015
  30. ^ Andy Battaglia, Land Art Gets Its Close-Up In New Film, Wall Street Journal September 27, 2015
  31. ^ Spotlight on Documentary at the 53rd New York Film Festival
  32. ^ Gregg Kilday, Laura Poitras, Frederick Wiseman to Screen New Work at New York Film Festival, Hollywood Reporter, August 24, 2015
  33. ^ First Run Features, Troublemakers Opens January 8 in NY
  34. ^ Katie Walsh,"Review: Documentary 'Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex Fashion & Disco' Captures Wild Times of Influential Illustrator, Los Angeles Times, September 20, 2018
  35. ^ Vincent Boucher, "'Sex Fashion & Disco': Looking Back at Fashion Illustrator Antonio Lopez's Life and Career," Hollywood Reporter, November 17, 2017
  36. ^ Official site for Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex Fashion & Disco
  37. ^ Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex Fashion & Disco, Dogwoof Global, London
  38. ^ Antonio by Staff in Interview, March 2017
  39. ^ The Man Who Seduced Jessica Lange, Jerry Hall and Karl Lagerfeld by Horacio Silva in W, March 2017
  40. ^ The Art of Seduction by Jasmin Hernandez in Cultured, June 2017
  41. ^ "IFC Center - Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex Fashion & Disco".
  42. ^ "Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex, Fashion & Disco - Laemmle.com". www.laemmle.com.
  43. ^ Film Movement, Theatrical Playdates, Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex Fashion & Disco
  44. ^ "Antonio Lopez 1970: Sex Fashion & Disco on iTunes" – via itunes.apple.com.
  45. ^ Denise Petski, "Starz Acquires Four New Documentaries for Premiere in the Spring," Deadline, January 10, 2019
  46. ^ Erik Pedersen, "Oscars: 166 Films Vying In Feature Documentary Race," Deadline, November 8, 2018
  47. ^ Spit Earth: Who is Jordan Wolfson?, IMDb
  48. ^ Artnet News
  49. ^ Spit Earth: Who is Jordan Wolfson? Official film website
  50. ^ Douglas F. Smith, book review Archived 2010-08-27 at the Wayback Machine, Library Journal.
  51. ^ Jörg M. Colberg, book review, Conscientious.
  52. ^ Lenora Jane Estes, book review, Vanity Fair.
  53. ^ Photo District News Notable Books of 2009
  54. ^ Douglas Stockdale, book review, photo-eye Magazine.
  55. ^ Planet°, Sarah Coleman on Variety
  56. ^ Times Literary Supplement (London), March 1, 1996, "Uranian, Ukrainian," Will Eames reviews F. Holland Day: Suffering the Ideal
  57. ^ Interview Magazine (April 1996) "A New Day for an Old Tale," Brad Goldfarb on F. Holland Day: Suffering the Ideal
  58. ^ The August Sander Project: 2017, Museum of Modern Art, September 15, 2017
  59. ^ Daily Beast, The Kings of Kodachrome by Philip Gefter
  60. ^ NPR, The Crusade for Color by Claire O'Neill
  61. ^ 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
  62. ^ Voice, January 19, 1999, "Photo Finish" by Vince Aletti
  63. ^ The New York Times Book Review, Andy Grundberg reviews Harm's Way
  64. ^ Washington Post, Garry Winogrand: Huge Influence, Early Exit by Frank Van Riper
  65. ^ Art Journal, Vol. 63, No. 3 (Autumn 2004) The Evans File by Benjamin Lima
  66. ^ The New York Times Book Review, Andy Grundberg reviews Adam Fuss

External links[edit]