ABOUT ME

An independent curator and lecturer specializing in American marine art, author James A. Craig first became enamored with New England's maritime saga while studying Anthropology at the University of Massachusetts.

 

Having by his own admission “fallen” into the world of fine art, Craig was first employed at the House of the Seven Gables Museum in nearby Salem, MA, where he served as a curatorial assistant and museum educator. He went on to serve as Associate Curator for Collections at the Cape Ann Museum in Gloucester, Massachusetts, where he published an award winning biography on the great American marine painter Fitz Henry Lane. Besides Fitz H. Lane: An Artist’s Voyage through Nineteenth-Century America (The History Press, 2006) he has published 100 Essex Road: an American Treasure about the George Cabot Lee estate in Newton, Massachusetts, 2008, and Frank Vining Smith: Maritime Painting in the 20th Century (Hard Press Editions, 2010). In 2011 he contributed to the Portsmouth Historical Society’s Maritime Portsmouth: The Sawtelle Collection, describing the artistic relationship of George S. Wasson and John Haley Bellamy drawn from his research for American Eagle: The Bold Art and Brash Life of John Haley Bellamy. When not performing his duties as an independent consultant to fine art collectors, antique dealers, and museums, he can be found along the granite shores of the ancient fishing port of Gloucester, Massachusetts, where he resides with his wife Katie, their daughter, their cat, and that irascible scoundrel, George the Turtle.

                            Curriculum Vitae

PROFESSIONAL MUSEUM EMPLOYMENT

 

-Author/Researcher/Independent Consultant to fine art collectors, antique dealers, and museums (2006-Present)

-Executive Director, Albacore Park/Portsmouth Submarine Memorial Association (2015-2018)

 

-Associate Curator for Collections, Cape Ann Historical Museum (2003-2006)

 

-Curatorial Assistant, House of the Seven Gables Museum (2002-2003)

 

-Museum Educator, House of the Seven Gables Museum (2002-2003)

-Historic Interpreter/Site Supervisor, House of the Seven Gables (2002-2003)

CURATED EXHIBITIONS

 

-Leon Kroll: A Singular Vision. Cape Ann Historical Association, summer, 2004

 

-Neighbors and Friends. Cape Ann Historical Association, summer, 2005

 

-Whaling on Cape Ann: The Untold Story, 1737-1938. Cape Ann Historical Association, autumn, 2006

 

-Bold and Brash! The Art of John Haley Bellamy. Portsmouth Historical Society, spring, 2014

-L8 to Today – 100 Years of Building Submarines at the Portsmouth Naval Ship Yard. Albacore Park/Portsmouth Submarine Memorial Association, autumn, 2015

-Running Deep: The Many Tools Submarines Use to Navigate Underwater, Both Yesterday and Today. Albacore Park/Portsmouth Submarine Memorial Association, spring, 2016

-Surrender at Sea: the German U-boat Surrenders at Portsmouth, New Hampshire in May of 1945. Albacore Park/Portsmouth Submarine Memorial Association, spring, 2017

PUBLICATIONS

 

-Fitz Henry Lane: An Affinity For The Sea. Publisher: Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine. Volume 3, Issue 4, April, 2006 (article)

 

-Fitz H. Lane: An Artist’s Voyage through Nineteenth Century America. Publisher: The History Press. August, 2006 (book)

 

-An Affinity for the Sea: The Art of Fitz Henry Lane. Publisher: Boston Antiques for Charity, Inc. 47th Annual Ellis Antiques Show, November, 2006 (article)

 

-100 Essex Road: An American Treasure. Publisher: DR Fine Art. December, 2008 (book)

 

-Frank Vining Smith: Maritime Painting in the 20th Century. Publisher: Hard Press Editions/Hudson Hills. July, 2010 (book)

 

-George Savary Wasson: Forgotten Genius of the Maine Coast, appearing within Maritime Portsmouth: The Sawtelle Collection, edited by Richard M. Candee. Publisher: Portsmouth Historical Society. June, 2011 (essay)

 

-American Eagle: The Bold Art and Brash Life of John Haley Bellamy. Publisher: Portsmouth Marine Society. April, 2014. (book)

 

-The Bold & Brash Art of John Haley Bellamy, Carver Extraordinaire, edited by Richard M. Candee. Publisher: The Art Guide to South Coast Maine and Seacoast New Hampshire. April, 2014 (essay)

 

-American Eagle: New Findings involving the Industrial Production Methods of John Haley Bellamy, Shipcarver, Kittery, Maine. Publisher: Society of Industrial Archaeology. June, 2014. (essay.)

 

-American Eagle: New Discoveries Concerning the Bold Art of John Haley Bellamy. Publisher: Antiques & Fine Art Magazine. August, 2014 (article)

 

-American Eagle: The Bold Art of John Haley Bellamy, America’s Greatest Shipcarver. Publisher: Maine Boats, Homes & Harbors. March, 2015 (article)

 

 

 

UPCOMING PUBLICATIONS

 

 

 

AWARDS

 

-Gloucester Historical Commission 2007 Preservation Award. (Awarded for the book Fitz H. Lane: An Artist’s Voyage through Nineteenth Century America, it being cited as “a significant treatise in the art history of Gloucester.”)

 

-Innisfree International College & Convention Center Celtic Studies Program 2009 Award of Scholarship. (Awarded for the essay Archaeological Heritage of Sligo, Republic of Ireland)

 

 

 

LECTURES / PUBLIC APPEARANCES

 

-Cape Ann Historical Museum, Fitz Hugh Lane Primer (three-part lecture series presented on July 10, 17, & 24, 2004)

 

-Cape Ann Historical Museum, Let’s Go Sailing! (Boat tour of Gloucester Inner and Outer Harbor, narrated on July 10 & 11, 2004, and July 21, 2005)

 

-Essex National Heritage Commission, Trails and Sails, 2004: Walking Tour of the Gloucester Inner Harbor (Presented on September 25, 2004)

 

-The Northeast Sea Glass Festival, Shipwrecks of Cape Ann & the China Trade (Presented on October 9, 2004)

 

-Essex National Heritage Commission, Trails and Sails, 2005/2006: Follow the Footsteps of Fitz Hugh Lane (Presented on September 24, 2005, and September 23rd, 2006)

 

-Cape Ann Historical Museum (in collaboration with The Whale Center of New England), Whaling on Cape Ann: The Untold Story 1737-1938 (Presented on March 11, 2006)

 

-The Rocky Neck Art Colony, “Nights on the Neck”: History of the Rocky Neck Art Colony, 1836 to Today (Presented on July 6, 2006)

 

-Northeast Auctions: Fitz H. Lane: An Artists Voyage through Nineteenth-Century America (Presented on August 19, 2006)

 

-The Rocky Neck Art Colony, “Nights on the Neck”: New Revelations into the Art and Life of Fitz Henry Lane (Presented on October 5, 2006)

 

-The Farnsworth Art Museum and Wyeth Center: New Revelations into the Art and Life of Fitz Henry Lane (Presented on March 11, 2007)

 

-The Society for the Encouragement of the Arts (SeArts): New Revelations into the Art and Life of Fitz Henry Lane (Presented on March 13, 2007)

 

-India House Club: Fitz H. Lane: An Artists Voyage through Nineteenth-Century America (Presented on April 17, 2007)

 

-Manchester Historical Association: Fitz H. Lane and his Connections to Manchester, Massachusetts (Presented on June 6, 2007)

 

-Concord Museum: Use of Color as a Means of Expressing Transcendental Ideal in the Art of Fitz H. Lane (Presented on July 29, 2007)

 

-Rockport Art Association: Fitz H. Lane and his Connections to Rockport, Massachusetts (Presented on August 8, 2007)

 

-Essex Shipbuilding Museum: New Revelations into the Art and Life of Fitz Henry Lane (Presented on August 14, 2007)

 

-Danvers Art Association: New Revelations into the Art and Life of Fitz Henry Lane (Presented on October 6, 2007)

 

-Nahant Historical Society: Fitz H. Lane and his Connections to Nahant, Massachusetts (Presented on October 21, 2007)

 

-The Society for the Encouragement of the Arts (SeArts): The Role of Phrenology and Mysticism in 19th Century American Art (Presented with Ms. Susan Erony, former Executive Director, SeArts, on November 20, 2007)

 

-Massachusetts Historical Society: 1st Annual Holiday Book Fair. (Was one of eight authors [including Eric J. Dolan and Eve LaPlante] who spoke at a two day symposium and book sale concerning New England history, presented on December 1, 2007)

 

-Newport Art Museum: New Revelations into the Art and Life of Fitz Henry Lane (Presented on February 23, 2008)

 

-Salem Athenaeum: New Revelations into the Art and Life of Fitz Henry Lane (Presented on December 4, 2008)

 

-Heritage Museums & Gardens: Frank Vining Smith: Maritime Painting in the 20th Century (Presented on June 27, 2010)

 

-Salem Marine Arts Gallery: Frank Vining Smith: Maritime Painting in the 20th Century (Presented on July 22, 2010)

 

-Rockport Public Library (in collaboration with Toad Hall Bookstore): Frank Vining Smith: Maritime Painting in the 20th Century (Presented on September 1, 2010)

 

-The Mariner’s Museum, Newport News, VA: Frank Vining Smith: Maritime Painting in the 20th Century (Presented on September 4, 2010)

 

-Hingham Historical Society: Frank Vining Smith: Maritime Painting in the 20th Century (Presented on September 22, 2010)

 

-Heritage Museums & Gardens: Frank Vining Smith: Maritime Painting in the 20th Century (Encore presentation, presented on October 3, 2010)

 

-Vose Galleries: Frank Vining Smith: Maritime Painting in the 20th Century (Presented on October 23, 2010)

-Hull Lifesaving Museum: Frank Vining Smith: Maritime Painting in the 20th Century (Presented on January 13, 2011)

 

-Essex Shipbuilding Museum: Frank Vining Smith: Maritime Painting in the 20th Century (Presented on February 10, 2011)

 

-Portsmouth Historical Society: Glorious Collaboration: The Art and Friendship of John Haley Bellamy and George Savary Wasson (Presented on July 2, 2011)-Portsmouth Historic Houses Association

 

–Life and Death in the Piscataqua Symposium: American Eagle: A New Look at the Life and Art of John Haley Bellamy (Presented on February 8, 2014)

 

-Kittery Historical & Naval Museum: American Eagle: A New Look at the Life and Art of John Haley Bellamy (Presented on March 11, 2014)

 

-Portsmouth Historical Society: American Eagle: A New Look at the Life and Art of John Haley Bellamy (Presented on April 5, 2014)

 

-The Gundalow Company: American Eagle: A New Look at the Life and Art of John Haley Bellamy (Presented on April 12, 2014)

 

-Portsmouth Historical Society: American Eagle: A New Look at the Life and Art of John Haley Bellamy (Presented on May 9, 2014)

 

-Society of Industrial Archaeology: American Eagle: New Findings involving the Industrial Production Methods of John Haley Bellamy, Shipcarver, Kittery, Maine (Presented on May 17, 2014)

 

-Portsmouth Historical Society: Impersonating Bellamy: Stories of Inspired Imitators, Fallacious Forgeries, and Cases of Mistaken Identity (Presented on July 25, 2014)

 

-Portsmouth Historical Society: Carving for Ol’ King Neptune: John Haley Bellamy’s Career as a Ship Carver (Presented on August 15, 2014)

 

-Northeast Auctions: American Eagle: A New Look at the Life and Art of John Haley Bellamy (Presented on August 16, 2014)

 

-Portsmouth Historical Society: Atypical Offerings: John Haley Bellamy’s Forgotten Days as a House Carpenter (Presented on September 5, 2014)

 

-Portsmouth Historical Society: Decoding the Many Myths of John Haley Bellamy (Presented on September 19, 2014)

 

-USS Constitution Museum: American Eagle: A New Look at the Life and Art of John Haley Bellamy (Presented on November 19, 2014)

–Life and Death in the Piscataqua Symposium: A Measureless Peril: Wartime Hysteria, Spies, Surrenders at Sea, and U-Boats off of Portsmouth, New Hampshire,  in World War II  (Presented on March 5, 2017)

–Life and Death in the Piscataqua Symposium: Fitz Henry Lane & His Portsmouth Paintings  (Presented on February 10, 2018)

–Exeter Historical Society: A Measureless Peril: Wartime Hysteria, Spies, Surrenders at Sea, and U-Boats off of Portsmouth, New Hampshire,  in World War II  (Presented on May 1, 2018)

UPCOMING LECTURES / PUBLIC APPEARANCES

TELEVISION APPEARANCES

 

-Home and Garden Network, Historic Homes of Salem (Aired Oct. 2002. High Noon Productions)

 

-P.B.S. Boston, educational documentary Not Yet A Nation (Offered for sale Fall, 2003. Intelecom)

 

-Trails & Sails Through Essex County, Volume 3, Heritage Landscape Painters of the ENHA (Aired Summer/Fall, 2004. Essex National Heritage Commission)

 

-Adelphia Public Access, The Writer’s Block (Aired December 28th, 2006, & January 8th, 2007)

-New Hampshire 1, Nazi Submarines in New Hampshire (Aired February 9th, 2015)

RADIO APPEARANCES

 

-WHYY Radio (National Public Radio, Philadelphia, Ralph Collier Syndicated Programs and Publications) (two five-minute interviews pertaining to Cape Ann History, aired fall of 2006)

 

 

 

INTERNET APPEARANCES

 

-Boston.com, Art World Adjusts to Lane Change (narration of image slideshow: www.boston.com/news/local/massachusetts/articles/2006/07/01/art_world_adjusts_to_lane_change/?page=1)

 

-WGBH Forum Network, American Eagle: The Bold Art and Brash Life of John Haley Bellamy (http://forum-network.org/lectures/american-eagle-bold-art-and-brash-life-john-haley-bellamy/)

 

-Antique Auction Forum, 157. Jim Craig on Carver, John Haley Bellamy (http://antiqueauctionforum.com/tag/the-art-of-john-haley-bellamy/)

 

-New Hampshire 1, Nazi Submarines in New Hampshire (http://www.nh1.com/videoplayer/?video_id=2239&categories=18)

 

 

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