Born in New Kensington, Pennsylvania, Ray DiPalma is a poet and visual artist. He earned his BA at Duquesne University and his MFA at the Iowa Writers Workshop. As a co-author of L E G E N D (L=A=N=G=U=A=G=E/Segue, 1980) with Bruce Andrews, Charles Bernstein, Ron Silliman, and Steve McCaffery, he is often associated with the Language school of poets. Silliman has written that DiPalma's poems "are not nearly so much objects as they are environments, lush worlds, sensual & crowded. You enter them & can wander endlessly – tho in fact his scale is mostly . . . quite contained. It’s a world we should all visit often."
DiPalma has published over 30 books of poetry, translations, and graphic work with small presses, most recently House of Keys (Longhouse, 2010), The Ancient Use of Stone: Journals and Daybooks 1998-2008 (Otis Books / Seismicity Editions, 2009), Pensieri (Echo Park Press, 2009), and Further Apocrypha (Pie in the Sky Press, 2009). Among his earlier collections are Numbers and Tempers: Selected Early Poems, 1966-1986 (1993), Le Tombeau de Reverdy (1997), Provocations (1994), Hôtel des Ruines (1993), and Planh (1979). His visual work has been collected by and displayed at many galleries and museums, including the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and the Art Institute of Chicago. He has received awards and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York Foundation for the Arts, and the Fund for Poetry.
DiPalma lives in New York City and has taught at the School of Visual Arts in Manhattan. His correspondence, manuscripts, and printed materials are held at Yale University's Beinecke Library.
Audio & PodcastsPoem Talk
Perhaps a New Optimism: A Discussion of Ray DiPalma's "It makes of nonsense"
Hosted by Al Filreis and featuring Charles Bernstein, John Tranter, and Aaron Shurin.
POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic
SCHOOL / PERIOD Language Poetry
LIFE SPAN 1943–