Bernadette Mayer

Bernadette Mayer

East Nassau, NY

Bernadette Mayer has published more than 20 collections of poetry. She began her career as a conceptual artist, experimenting with time-based works that combined photography and writing, and editing and publishing the magazine 0 TO 9 with artist Vito Acconci. She created the book-length work Midwinter Day (a book written in one day) and, most recently, The Helens of Troy, NY. She has taught in a variety of writing programs, including those at the Naropa Institute, Long Island University and Miami University. She is the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and a grant from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts.

Mayer passed away in 2022.

The Helens of Troy, New York

Bernadette Mayer

Artist Bio

The Helens of Troy, New York is a book of poetry and photographs featuring women named Helen from the city of Troy, New York. Inspired by her own knowledge of ancient Greek and the mythic character Helen of Troy, Bernadette Mayer conducted interviews with these local women, photographed them and their surroundings, and created a poem and visual presentation for each of them. The Helens of Troy, New York exists as a book, a gallery exhibition, and a performance of the text.

Photography, Poetry
Award Year