Bio

download bio pdf

Eileen Myles is a poet, novelist, performer and art journalist. Their twenty books include Afterglow (a dog memoir), a 2017 re-issue of Cool for You and I Must Be Living Twice/new and selected poems, and Chelsea Girls. Eileen Myles was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts in 1949, attended Catholic schools in Arlington, MA and graduated from the University of Massachusetts (Boston) in 1971. They came to New York in 1974 to be a poet. Their poetic education primarily took place at St. Mark's Poetry Project from 1975 to 1977, through attending readings and participating in workshops led by Alice Notley, Ted Berrigan, Bill Zavatsky and Paul Violi. From 1984 to 1986 Eileen was the artistic director of St. Mark's Poetry Project.

From 1977 to 1979 they published dodgems, a poetry magazine that represented a collision of New York School, Language Poetry, performance texts, unconventional prose, as well as tossed-off notes from neighbors and celebrities. In 1977, Eileen co-edited the feminist anthology Ladies Museum, and in 1979 worked as an assistant to poet James Schuyler. That same year, Eileen Myles was a founding member of the Los Texans Collective (along with Elinor Nauen and Barbara McKay), which went on to produce the play Patriarchy and the spiritual entertainment Joan of Arc.

Myles has toured and read all over North America and the world on and off since the early 1980s. Their solo performances include Leaving New York (1989), Life (1991), and Summer in Russia (1996) at PS 122 in New York. Myles's plays include Feeling Blue (Parts 1, 2, and 3) at Modern Art, and Our Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz, written for Alina Troyano and produced at PS 122. In 2004, Eileen Myles wrote the libretto for the opera Hell, composed by Michael Webster. In 2010, they created and directed their Dia Center for the Arts performance piece, The Collection of Silence, which involved dancers, poets, children, visual artists, and Buddhists in a collective public act of silence at the Hispanic Society in New York.

Myles's other books include Snowflake/different streets (2012), Inferno: A Poet's Novel (2010),  The Importance of Being Iceland: Travel Essays in Art (2009), Sorry, Tree (2007), Tow (2005, with artists Larry R. Collins), Skies (2001), on my way (2001), Cool for You (novel, 2000), School of Fish (1997), Maxfield Parrish (1995), Not Me (1991), and Chelsea Girls (1994). In 1995, with Liz Kotz, Myles edited The New Fuck You: Adventures in Lesbian Reading. As a poet and art journalist, Eileen has contributed to a wide number of publications including Art Forum, The New Yorker, Harpers, Parkett, The Believer, Vice, Cabinet, The Nation, TimeOut, The New York Times, Paris Review, AnOther Magazine, and The Poetry Project Newsletter. They often contribute essays to catalogs for individual artists such as Cathy Opie, Shannon Ebner, Marilyn Minter, Jack Pierson as well as for major exhibitions such as the Whitney and Liverpool Biennials.

Eileen Myles is the recipient of a Guggenheim Fellowship in non-fiction, an Andy Warhol/Creative Capital art writers' grant, four Lambda Book Awards, the Shelley Prize from the PSA, was named to the Slate/Whiting Second Novel List in 2015, and received a poetry award from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts. In 2016, they received a Creative Capital grant and the Clark Prize for excellence in art writing. They live in Marfa, TX and New York.

short version