Photographs by Martin Fishman (1937 - 2010)


Presented as a celebration of the artistry and lives of both men, QUENTIN CRISP IN BLACK AND WHITE: Photographs by Martin Fishman, offers no rainbow flags. No welcome mats of glory and fame. No bright celebratory moments of excess and inebriation. Just pure, black-and-white photographic honesty. Simple as that. Each image captures a solid fact harshly spoken, but that is what Martin Fishman’s photographs often show, the harsh truth of being. And that is what his photographs of Quentin Crisp offer to us.

This rare personal glimpse into the life of Quentin Crisp and his “profession of being” offers us a black-and-white honesty of a familiar icon seen as a human being. Each print is unique in that it captures an intimate and personal moment, often in Quentin’s home, and with glances suggesting mini invasions. Thus, we are provided Mr. Fishman’s slight wink of paparazzi-like moments with Mr. Crisp doing ordinary things. And many of these images have never been seen before!

MARTIN FISHMAN (1937 - 2010) was a photographer whose work speaks with a loud voice while offering a gentle nod of respect toward the subject—yet with an acknowledgement of what the harsh truth of a camera’s lens can subtly see in a quick moment of time. Raised on Pitt Street and then Brighton Beach, Fishman developed a passion for photography in high school and that passion remained with Marty for the rest of his life. He remained an active and productive photographer until his death on February 3, 2010.

Mr. Fishman’s work has appeared in an array of newspapers, magazines, periodicals, books, and Internet. His photographs appeared in the New York Times, Time Out New York, and The Sun. And his images depicting New York City’s nightlife were published in Japan’s Blonde and Friday News magazines; and his photographs appear in the books: Cross, Deviant Desires, Miss Vera’s Finishing School For Boys Who Want To Be Girls, and in the memorial tribute book, An Evening for Quentin Crisp.

Mr. Fishman exhibited at Ariel Meyerowitz Gallery, Art@Large, East Fourth Street Photo Gallery, The Emerging Collector, Focus II Photography (also was the director), The Leslie-Lohman Gallery, Limelight Gallery, Synchronicity Art Gallery, and Rafaella on Ninth, and Caffe Rafaella. His photographs are in several private and museum collections. His photographs have appeared in exhibits presented by Phillip Ward and Crisperanto: The Quentin Crisp Archives: Quentin Crisp: London & New York (2000); Quentin Crisp: Portraits of a Legend (2001); Quentin Crisp: The Naked Bon Vivant (2002); Of Quentin Crisp: Photographs from the Quentin Crisp Archives (2002); Martin Fishman: Faces of Wigstock (2003); and Martin Fishman: Pride On Christopher Street (2005).

QUENTIN CRISP (1908 – 1999) is the author of the classic—and flamboyantly eccentric—coming-of-age memoir The Naked Civil Servant. The award-winning film version of The Naked Civil Servant, starring John Hurt, made him an instant international celebrity. In 1981, Quentin Crisp moved to New York City, bringing along his familiar and witty remarks and his eccentricity. Quentin Crisp charmed everyone and became "the face of a modern rebel”. Throughout his near twenty-year tenure on Manhattan, Mr. Crisp wrote a variety of books, reviews, appeared in several movies (most notably playing Elizabeth I in Sally Ann Potter's Orlando) and otherwise delighted us publicly and privately with his inimitable grace, wit and genius. Quentin Crisp died on the eve of touring his one-man show in Manchester, England, on November 21, 1999. To learn more about “all things Quentin Crisp”, visit his official web site at Crisperanto: The Quentin Crisp Archives at

PHILLIP WARD was Quentin Crisp's personal assistant, dresser, typist, escort, and travel companion during the 1980s and until Mr. Crisp's death in 1999. As literary and estate executor for Quentin Crisp, he is archivist and curator of Crisperanto: The Quentin Crisp Archives ( and Mr. Ward is a consultant and researcher, curator, multimedia artist, photographer, poet, and writer. His writings and photographs have appeared in magazines, journals, books, and Internet, including group exhibitions in New York and Japan. Mr. Ward was consultant and contributor to “Hats: An Anthology by Stephen Jones” at Victoria and Albert Museum (London, 2009) and the movie An Englishman in New York (2008/2009, Quentin Crisp pseudo-biopic with John Hurt). He conceived and produced (with Richard Weaver) the multimedia event “Imitation of Crisp: A Happening in the PArofession of Being!” at Envoy Enterprises in February 2010.

BROADWAY GALLERY is an open space for experimentation founded on the collaboration between artists, curators and writers, providing an ever-evolving dialogue on the contemporary art world. Artists are encouraged to engage in curatorial meetings and discussions, organize exhibitions, promote and sell artworks, arrange scholarships and residencies in the US, Germany, Spain and China. Reaching beyond the scope of the traditional white cube, Broadway Gallery hosts monthly dinners and symposiums, and provides art consultation.

Curator Phillip Ward, with Paula Fishman and Abraham Lubelski, presents QUENTIN CRISP IN BLACK AND WHITE: Photographs by Martin Fishman at Broadway Gallery from June 16–30, 2010. For more information, contact Phillip Ward at

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“I photograph every possible aspect of human life.
A famous movie director said an artist never looks away.
I never look away.” ~ Martin Fishman

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All photographs by Martin Fishman. Copyright © Phillip Ward. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

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