The Artist Birthday Series

Djuna Barnes

In 1921 she moved to Paris, where she lived for the next 10 years. During her sojourn abroad, she published A Book (1923) (a collection of poetry, plays, and short stories), as A Night Among the Horses (1929), Ladies Almanack (1928), and Ryder (1928). Her longest lasting relationship was to take place in her Paris years as well, with the sculptor Thelma Wood. The couple split up after Wood’s increasing dependency on alcohol and her refusal to maintain a monogamous relationship. Although Barnes had other female lovers, in her later years she was known to claim, “I am not a lesbian; I just loved Thelma.”

Throughout the following decade, Barnes spent time in England, Paris, New York, and North Africa. During her travels she put together and published Nightwood. In 1939 she returned to the United States to live, and chose New York City as her permanent home. 

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