Jump to content

Jill Krementz

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jill Krementz
BornFebruary 19, 1940 (1940-02-19) (age 84)
Notable workMarch on the Pentagon, cover of New York Times Magazine
(m. 1979; died 2007)
AwardsWashington Post/Children's Book Guild Nonfiction Award

Jill Krementz (born February 19, 1940) is an American photographer and author.[1] She has published 31 books, mostly of photography and children's books. She was married to Kurt Vonnegut for almost 30 years. [2]


Krementz grew up in Morristown, New Jersey and moved to New York City in her late teens.[3] In 1961 she received a Nikon camera as a 21st birthday present, and continued to build a career as a photographer and photojournalist. In the 1960s, she worked as a photographer for the New York Herald-Tribune.[4] Her color photography of the 1967 "March on the Pentagon" was featured on the cover of The New York Times Magazine.[5] In 1965, she spent a year taking photographs in Vietnam during the Vietnam War. Her photojournalist works have appeared in the New York Observer.[6][7]

Krementz later specialized in photographing writers. A major profile of her, written by Dorothy Gelatt, was published in the Spring 1975 issue of 35mm Photography (Ziff-Davis Publishing Company). According to the article, Krementz decided in 1970 to "fill the author picture vacuum". Working only with the aid of a secretary she built and ran a large library of photographs of authors. Most of her photographs at that time were in black and white. The article described her as working with a minimum of photographic equipment (two 35mm camera bodies and three lenses) and having her prints made by Erika Leone at the Meridian photographic laboratory. At the time the article was written, "the Krementz stock list of authors totalled roughly 542".[8] Four years later, her count was over 800.[9]

Krementz's photographs were exhibited at Nikon House Gallery in New York the mid-1970s. In 1980 her book The Writer's Image (David R. Godine, Boston) was published, featuring black-and-white photographs, with a preface written by Kurt Vonnegut, and an introduction by Trudy Butner Krisher.[10] In 1984 Krementz was awarded the Washington Post/Children’s Book Guild Nonfiction Award for “creatively produced books, works that make a difference.”[11]

In 2004, a major exhibition of her work was held at the Mark Twain House and Museum in Hartford, Connecticut. Writers Unbound featured warm, intimate portraits of authors in their homes and at their desks.[12] Krementz is the widow of author Kurt Vonnegut and has one daughter, Lily.


  1. ^ Taft, William H. (2015). Encyclopedia of Twentieth Century Journalists. Rutledge. p. 194. ISBN 9781317403258. Retrieved January 5, 2017.
  2. ^ Krementz, Jill. "How it Feels When a Parent Dies". Penguin Random House. Retrieved January 5, 2017.
  3. ^ Klemesrud, Judy (November 14, 1982). "Jill Krementz Carves a Niche". The New York Times. Retrieved January 5, 2017.
  4. ^ "Putting Words to Paper, Through the Lens". The New York Times. January 26, 1997. Retrieved January 5, 2017.
  5. ^ "Talk with Jill Krementz, author of "The writer's desk"". Booknotes Non-fiction authors in hour-long interviews 1989-2004. June 1, 1997. Archived from the original on January 31, 2012. Retrieved January 16, 2012.
  6. ^ "Archives: Jill Krementz". New York Observer. Retrieved January 5, 2017.
  7. ^ Krementz, Jill. "Photojournalist Jill Krementz Remembers Dr. King's 'I Have a Dream' Speech". Observer. Retrieved January 5, 2017.
  8. ^ Gelatt, Dorothy (Spring 1975). "Profile: Jill Krementz". 35mm Photography, Ziff-Davis Publishing Company.
  9. ^ Lenhart, Maria (June 5, 1979). "800 favorite authors--on film". The Christian Science Monitor.
  10. ^ Singer, Mark (December 23, 1974). "Five Gatherings (Musical and Otherwise)". The New Yorker. Retrieved January 5, 2017.
  11. ^ "Jill Krementz". Penguin Random House. Retrieved January 5, 2017.
  12. ^ Kores, Noah (November 11, 2004). "Krementz Show at Twain". Hartford Courant. Retrieved January 5, 2017.

External links[edit]