Natalie Clifford Barney
Writer and salonist
Natalie Clifford Barney
Natalie Clifford Barney was an American playwright, poet and novelist who lived as an expatriate in Paris. Barney's salon was held at her home on Paris' Left Bank for more than 60 years and brought together writers and artists from around the world, including many leading figures in French literature along with American and British Modernists of the Lost Generation.
Biography
Natalie Clifford Barney's personal information overview.
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Grim outlook for jewellers following carbon tax - Jeweller Magazine
Google News - over 5 years
Natalie Barney, director of New South Wales-based Windfield Jewellery echoed Meihofer's views and said the carbon tax would help Australians make a stand for the future. “I do think that overall people need to look beyond themselves and their
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Residents voice opinions about potential merge between Cherry Hill and ... - The Cherry Hill Sun
Google News - over 5 years
... which includes Platt; Roger Dennis, dean of Drexel University Law; Tom Yarnall, a member of the Cherry Hill reform committee, a civic action group; board of education president Seth Klukoff; and township business liaison Natalie Barney
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Merge talks advance - The Cherry Hill Sun
Google News - over 5 years
Roger Dennis, dean of Drexel University Law; Tom Yarnall, a member of the Cherry Hill reform committee, a civic action group; board of education president Seth Klukoff; and township business liaison Natalie Barney will also participate on Cherry Hill's
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Cherry Hill and Merchantville form commissions to look into merge - The Cherry Hill Sun
Google News - over 5 years
Members of the Cherry Hill commission are Platt, Roger Dennis, Tom Yarnall, board of education president Seth Klukoff and township business liaison Natalie Barney, said township spokesman Dan Keashen. On Monday, July 18 residents are invited to attend
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Natalie Clifford Barney - République des lettres
Google News - over 5 years
En 1900, Natalie Barney publie un premier volume de vers, Quelques portraits-sonnets de femmes, d'inspiration symboliste. Elle rencontre ensuite la poétesse Renée Vivien, qui fait d'elle sa muse. Rendue célèbre par ses amours (Colette,
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"Midnight in Paris" and the gay old 1920s - AfterEllen.com
Google News - over 5 years
I'm kind of obsessed with reading biographies and memoirs of the queer women who lived and loved during that period, including Gertrude and Alice, Natalie Barney, Romaine Brooks, Dolly Wilde, Radclyffe Hall and Djuna Barnes, who made a brief appearance
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Gertrude Stein: This is your life! Fine Arts - Bay Area Reporter
Google News - almost 6 years
"Although she certainly was on a first-name basis with many of the so-called 'women of the Left Bank' – Natalie Barney, Janet Flanner, Romaine Brooks, Sylvia Beach, and others – I discovered to my surprise that, from the 1920s forward, she primarily
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Mathieu Rosaz fat. SAWM "Demain tu te maries" (Arrête, arrête...) (15:00) - Le Post (Blog)
Google News - almost 6 years
2007: spectacle "Rencontres" au théâtre de la Vieille Grille (Paris): chansons et textes de Natalie Barney; Colette; Mauriac; Yvette Guilbert; Proust... Participation à l'enregistrement du single (+ clip) caritatif "J'y étais pas" du collectif "Les
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A fun time had by all at Art Blooms - The Cherry Hill Sun
Google News - almost 6 years
Cherry Hill Township's Business Liaison Natalie Barney and husband Nate enjoyed the festivities. Sustainable Cherry Hill's Lori Braunstein and Jay Lassiter take a break from saving the environment
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Neither your home, nor your township, should resemble a pig sty - The Cherry Hill Sun
Google News - almost 6 years
If you are interested in organizing a clean-up event at any time, or if you'd like to participate in our next Green Volunteer Day in October, contact Natalie Barney at 432-8706 or Earle Seneres at 424-2246. I am immensely grateful for the time our
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Novità Mursia - Seven Press (Abbonamento)
Google News - almost 6 years
... Modigliani e Jeanne Hébuterne, le regine lesbo della Belle Epoque Liane de Pougy e Natalie Barney, Scott e Zelda Fitzgerald, Colette e il sedicenne de Jouvenel, gli amanti rossi Tina Modotti e Julio Mella, la coppia folle di Salò Valenti-Ferida
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BEST SELLERS: November 20, 2005
NYTimes - over 11 years
Weeks This Last On Week Week List FICTION 1 1 2 PREDATOR, by Patricia Cornwell. (Putnam, $26.95.) On the trail of a possible serial killer, Dr. Kay Scarpetta turns to a jailed psychopath for advice. 2 2 3 AT FIRST SIGHT, by Nicholas Sparks. (Warner, $24.95.) The young couple from ''True 3 3 2 THE CAMEL CLUB, by David Baldacci. (Warner, $26.95.) A
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The L Word
NYTimes - over 11 years
WILD GIRLS Paris, Sappho and Art: The Lives and Loves of Natalie Barney and Romaine Brooks. By Diana Souhami. Illustrated. 224 pp. St. Martin's Press. $29.95. Diana Souhami's lively history stars two glamorous American women who -- in spite of numerous affairs, huge fights and possible mental illness -- carried on together for 55 years. These days,
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Charles Henri Ford, 94, Prolific Poet, Artist and Editor
NYTimes - over 14 years
Charles Henri Ford, a poet, editor, novelist, artist and legendary cultural catalyst whose career spanned much of 20th-century modernism, died on Friday in Manhattan. He was 94 and lived in Manhattan and had a house in Katmandu. Mr. Ford, who also had homes in Paris and on Crete for many years, was peripatetic, precocious, charismatic,
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Almost Famous
NYTimes - about 16 years
TRULY WILDE The Unsettling Story of Dolly Wilde, Oscar's Unusual Niece. By Joan Schenkar. Illustrated. 442 pp. New York: Basic Books. $30. DOROTHY WILDE (1895-1941) was a nobody who knew almost everybody in the fashionable circles of Left Bank Paris in the 1920's and 30's. Dolly, as she was known, shared a surname with her uncle Oscar, closely
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ART REVIEW; Politics Runs Through More Than Campaigns
NYTimes - over 16 years
THIS town tends to generate hot air of one kind or another year round, and the weather can get spectacularly toasty, even in a coolish summer like this one. Luckily, the city compensates with acres on acres of air-conditioned museum space, and a lot of very good art to fill it. At the moment, the big museums aren't necessarily the main attractions.
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ARTS; A 50-Year Trek Through the Territory of the Mind
NYTimes - over 18 years
''HE just thought it was awful, nowheresville,'' William S. Burroughs said of Edmonton, the boyhood home of his great friend and collaborator Brion Gysin. Indeed, when a 16-year-old Gysin boarded a cattle car and headed east, he left behind this land of his ''exile'' and never looked back. But the memories remained. As Gysin emerged as a creative
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Janet Flanner's Love Quadrangle
NYTimes - about 27 years
LEAD: To the Editor: To the Editor: For the record, I must correct a startling error in Kaye Gibbons's review of ''Genet: A Biography of Janet Flanner'' (Jan. 7). The American heiress and expatriate Natalie Barney never served ''as one corner of Flanner's love quadrangle,'' and no such assumption could be made on the basis of my book. Perhaps the
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photo of Ernest Hemingway and his father, Clarence Edmonds Hemingway, in 1928 (From ''Hemingway'') (page 25)
NYTimes - over 29 years
LEAD: HEMINGWAY By Kenneth S. Lynn. Illustrated. 702 pp. New York: Simon & Schuster. $24.95. HEMINGWAY By Kenneth S. Lynn. Illustrated. 702 pp. New York: Simon & Schuster. $24.95. REVIEWING two biographies of Ernest Hemingway in 1985, Raymond Carver wrote in these pages of the influence Hemingway had had on him and other American young men who
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FAMOUS, UNKNOWN DJUNA BARNES
NYTimes - about 31 years
To the Editor: As the curator of the Djuna Barnes Collection of personal papers, photographs, and artwork in the University of Maryland Libraries, I would like to offer a few small corrections to Robert Giroux's admirable essay '' 'The Most Famous Unknown in the World' - Remembering Djuna Barnes'' (Dec. 1). The photograph of Djuna Barnes on the
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Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Natalie Clifford Barney
    CHILDHOOD
  • 1972
    Died on February 2, 1972.
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  • 1970
    Brooks died in December 1970, and Barney on February 2, 1972 of heart failure.
    More Details Hide Details By the end of Barney's life her work had been largely forgotten. In 1979, Natalie Barney was honored with a place setting in Judy Chicago's feminist work of art The Dinner Party. In the 1980s Barney began to be recognized for what Karla Jay calls an "almost uncanny anticipation" of the concerns of later feminist writers. English translations of some of her memoirs, essays, and epigrams appeared in 1992, but most of her plays and poetry are still untranslated. Her indirect influence on literature, through her salon and her many literary friendships, can be seen in the number of writers who have addressed or portrayed her in their works. Claudine S'en Va (Claudine and Annie, 1903) by Colette contains a brief appearance by Barney as "Miss Flossie," echoing the nickname she had earlier been given in de Pougy's novel Idylle Saphique. Renée Vivien wrote many poems about her, as well as a Symbolist novel, Une Femme M'Apparut (A Woman Appeared to Me, 1904), in which she is described as having "eyes... as sharp and blue as a blade. The charm of peril emanated from her and drew me inexorably." Remy de Gourmont addressed her in his Letters to the Amazon, and Truman Capote mentioned her in his last, unfinished novel Answered Prayers. She also appeared in two later novels by writers who never met her: Francesco Rapazzini's Un Soir chez l'Amazone (An Evening with the Amazon, 2004) is a historical novel about Barney's salon, while Anna Livia's Minimax (1991) portrays both her and Renee Vivien as still-living vampires.
  • OTHER
  • 1939
    In 1939 she was diagnosed with breast cancer and refused surgery, seeking alternative treatments.
    More Details Hide Details The following year, World War II separated her from Barney; she fled Paris for England while Barney went to Italy with Brooks. She died in 1941 from causes that have never been fully explained, possibly a paraldehyde overdose. Barney's attitudes during World War II have been controversial. In 1937, Una, Lady Troubridge had complained that Barney "talked a lot of half-baked nonsense about the tyranny of fascism". Barney herself was one-quarter Jewish, and since she spent the war in Italy with Romaine Brooks, risked deportation to a concentration camp—a fate she avoided only by wiring her sister Laura for a notarized document attesting to her confirmation. Nevertheless, having no other source of information about the war, she believed Axis propaganda that portrayed the Allies as the aggressors, so that pro-Fascism seemed to her to be a logical consequence of her pacifism. An unpublished memoir she wrote during the war years is pro-Fascist and anti-Semitic, quoting speeches by Hitler, apparently with approval.
  • 1927
    She did some work as a translator and was often supported by others, including Barney, whom she met in 1927.
    More Details Hide Details Like Vivien, Wilde seemed bent on self-destruction. She drank heavily, was addicted to heroin, and attempted suicide several times. Barney financed Drug detoxifications, which were never effective; she emerged from one nursing-home stay with a new dependency on the sleeping draught paraldehyde, then available over-the-counter.
    Of these, the three longest relationships were with de Gramont, Brooks, and Wilde; from 1927, she was involved with all three of them simultaneously, a situation that ended only with Wilde's death.
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  • 1920
    Barney obliged in 1920 with Pensées d'une Amazone (Thoughts of an Amazon), her most overtly political work.
    More Details Hide Details In the first section, "Sexual Adversity, War, and Feminism", she developed feminist and pacifist themes, describing war as an "involuntary and collective suicide ordained by man". In war, she said, men "father death as women mother life, with courage and without choice". The epigrammatic form makes it difficult to determine the details of Barney's views; ideas are presented only to be dropped, and some pensées seem to contradict others. Some critics interpret her as saying that the aggression that leads to war is visible in all male relationships. Karla Jay, however, argues that her philosophy was not that sweeping, and is better summed up by the epigram "Those who love war lack the love of an adequate sport—the art of living." Another section of Pensées d'une Amazone, "Misunderstanding, or Sappho's Lawsuit", gathered historical writings about homosexuality along with her own commentary. She also covered topics such as alcohol, friendship, old age, and literature, writing "Novels are longer than life" and "Romanticism is a childhood ailment; those who had it young are the most robust." A third volume, Nouvelles Pensées de l'Amazone (New Thoughts of the Amazon), appeared in 1939.
    Her last book of poetry was called Poems & Poemes: Autres Alliances and came out in 1920, bringing together romantic poetry in both French and English.
    More Details Hide Details Barney asked Ezra Pound to edit the poems but then ignored the detailed recommendations he made. For over 60 years, Barney hosted a literary salon, a weekly gathering at which people met to socialize and discuss literature, art, music and any other topic of interest. Barney strove to feature women's writing while also hosting some of the most prominent male writers of her time. She brought together expatriate Modernists with members of the French Academy. Joan Schenkar described Barney's salon as "a place where lesbian assignations and appointments with academics could coexist in a kind of cheerful, cross-pollinating, cognitive dissonance." In the 1900s Barney held early gatherings of the salon at her house in Neuilly. The entertainment included poetry readings and theatricals (in which Colette sometimes performed). Mata Hari performed a dance once, riding into the garden as Lady Godiva on a white horse harnessed with turquoise cloisonné.
  • 1918
    They eventually separated, and in 1918 she and Barney wrote up a marriage contract stating: "No one union shall be so strong as this union, nor another joining so tender—nor relationship so lasting." De Gramont accepted Barney's nonmonogamy—perhaps reluctantly at first—and went out of her way to be gracious to her other lovers, always including Romaine Brooks when she invited Barney to vacation in the country. The relationship continued until de Gramont's death in 1954.
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  • 1914
    Barney's longest relationship was with the American painter Romaine Brooks, whom she met around 1914.
    More Details Hide Details Brooks specialized in portraiture and was noted for her somber palette of gray, black, and white. During the 1920s she painted portraits of several members of Barney's social circle, including de Gramont and Barney herself. Brooks tolerated Barney's casual affairs well enough to tease her about them, and had a few of her own over the years, but could become jealous when a new love became serious. Usually she simply left town, but at one point she gave Barney an ultimatum to choose between her and Dolly Wilde—relenting once Barney had given in. At the same time, while Brooks was devoted to Barney, she did not want to live with her as a full-time couple; she disliked Paris, disdained Barney's friends, hated the constant socializing on which Barney thrived, and felt that she was fully herself only when alone. To accommodate Brooks's need for solitude they built a summer home consisting of two separate wings joined by a dining room, which they called Villa Trait d'Union, the hyphenated villa. Brooks also spent much of the year in Italy or travelling elsewhere in Europe, away from Barney. They remained devoted to one another for over fifty years.
  • 1910
    She was married and had two daughters in 1910, when she met Barney; her husband is said to have been violent and tyrannical.
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  • 1909
    The play Equivoque may have led Barney to leave Neuilly in 1909.
    More Details Hide Details According to a contemporary newspaper article, her landlord objected to her holding an outdoor performance of a play about Sappho, which he felt "followed nature too closely". She canceled her lease and rented the pavilion at 20, Rue Jacob in Paris' Latin Quarter and her salon was held there until the late 1960s. This was a small two-story house, separated on three sides from the main building on the street. Next to the pavillon was a large, overgrown garden with a Doric "Temple of Friendship" tucked into one corner. In this new location, the salon grew a more prim outward face, with poetry readings and conversation, perhaps because Barney had been told the pavillon's floors would not hold up to large dancing parties. Frequent guests during this period included Pierre Louÿs, Paul Claudel, Philippe Berthelot and translator J. C. Mardrus.
  • 1904
    In 1904 she wrote Je Me Souviens (I Remember), an intensely personal prose poem about their relationship which was presented as a single handwritten copy to Vivien in an attempt to win her back.
    More Details Hide Details They reconciled and traveled together to Lesbos, where they lived happily together for a short time and talked about starting a school of poetry for women like the one which Sappho, according to tradition, had founded on Lesbos some 2,500 years before. However, Vivien soon got a letter from her lover Baroness Hélène van Zuylen and went to Constantinople thinking she would break up with her in person. Vivien planned to meet Barney in Paris afterward but instead stayed with the Baroness and this time, the breakup was permanent. Vivien's health declined rapidly after this. According to Vivien's friend and neighbor Colette, she ate almost nothing and drank heavily, even rinsing her mouth with perfumed water to hide the smell. Colette's account has led some to call Vivien an anorexic but this diagnosis did not yet exist at the time. Vivien was also addicted to the sedative chloral hydrate. In 1908 she attempted suicide by overdosing on laudanum and died the following year. In a memoir written fifty years later Barney said "She could not be saved. Her life was a long suicide. Everything turned to dust and ashes in her hands."
  • 1901
    Barney practiced, and advocated, non-monogamy. As early as 1901, in Cinq Petits Dialogues Grecs, she argued in favor of multiple relationships and against jealousy; in Éparpillements she wrote "One is unfaithful to those one loves in order that their charm does not become mere habit."
    More Details Hide Details While she could be jealous herself, she actively encouraged at least some of her lovers to be non-monogamous as well. Due in part to Jean Chalon's early biography of her, published in English as Portrait of a Seductress, she had become more widely known for her many relationships than for her writing or her salon. She once wrote out a list, divided into three categories: liaisons, demi-liaisons, and adventures. Colette was a demi-liaison, while the artist and furniture designer Eyre de Lanux, with whom she had an off-and-on affair for several years, was listed as an adventure. Among the liaisons—the relationships that she considered most important—were Olive Custance, Renée Vivien, Élisabeth de Gramont, Romaine Brooks, and Dolly Wilde.
    While Barney was visiting her family in Washington, D.C. in 1901, Vivien stopped answering her letters.
    More Details Hide Details Barney tried to get her back for years, at one point persuading a friend, operatic mezzo-soprano Emma Calvé, to sing under Vivien's window so she could throw a poem (wrapped around a bouquet of flowers) up to Vivien on her balcony. Both flowers and poem were intercepted and returned by a governess.
  • 1900
    She was openly lesbian and began publishing love poems to women under her own name as early as 1900, considering scandal as "the best way of getting rid of nuisances" (meaning heterosexual attention from young males).
    More Details Hide Details In her writings she supported feminism and pacifism. She opposed monogamy and had many overlapping long and short-term relationships, including on-and-off romances with poet Renée Vivien and dancer Armen Ohanian and a 50-year relationship with painter Romaine Brooks. Her life and love affairs served as inspiration for many novels, ranging from the salacious French bestseller Sapphic Idyll to The Well of Loneliness, the most famous lesbian novel of the twentieth century.
  • 1899
    In November 1899 Barney met the poet Pauline Tarn, better known by her pen name Renée Vivien.
    More Details Hide Details For Vivien it was love at first sight, while Barney became fascinated with Vivien after hearing her recite one of her poems, which she described as "haunted by the desire for death." Their romantic relationship was also a creative exchange that inspired both of them to write. Barney provided a feminist theoretical framework which Vivien explored in her poetry. They adapted the imagery of the Symbolist poets along with the conventions of courtly love to describe love between women, also finding examples of heroic women in history and myth. Sappho was an especially important influence and they studied Greek so as to read the surviving fragments of her poetry in the original. Both wrote plays about her life. Vivien saw Barney as a muse and as Barney put it, "she had found new inspiration through me, almost without knowing me." Barney felt Vivien had cast her as a femme fatale and that she wanted "to lose herself... entirely in suffering" for the sake of her art. Vivien also believed in fidelity, which Barney was unwilling to agree to.
    In 1899 after seeing the courtesan Liane de Pougy at a dance hall in Paris, Barney presented herself at de Pougy's residence in a page costume and announced she was a "page of love" sent by Sappho.
    More Details Hide Details Although de Pougy was one of the most famous women in France, constantly sought after by wealthy and titled men, Barney's audacity charmed her. Their brief affair became the subject of de Pougy's tell-all roman à clef, Idylle Saphique (Sapphic Idyll). Published in 1901, this book became the talk of Paris, reprinted at least 69 times in its first year. Barney was soon well known as the model for one of the characters. By this time, however, the two had already broken up after quarreling repeatedly over Barney's desire to "rescue" de Pougy from her life as a courtesan. Barney herself contributed a chapter to Idylle Saphique in which she described reclining at de Pougy's feet in a screened box at the theater, watching Sarah Bernhardt's play Hamlet. During intermission, Barney (as "Flossie") compares Hamlet's plight with that of women: "What is there for women who feel the passion for action when pitiless Destiny holds them in chains? Destiny made us women at a time when the law of men is the only law that is recognized." She also wrote Lettres à une Connue (Letters to a Woman I Have Known), her own epistolary novel about the affair. Although Barney failed to find a publisher for the book and later called it naïve and clumsy, it is notable for its discussion of homosexuality, which Barney regarded as natural and compared to albinism. "My queerness," she said, "is not a vice, is not deliberate, and harms no one."
  • 1876
    Barney was born in 1876 in Dayton, Ohio, to Albert Clifford Barney and Alice Pike Barney.
    More Details Hide Details Her father was the son of a wealthy manufacturer of railway cars and of English descent, and her mother was of French, Dutch and German ancestry. Her maternal grandfather's father was Jewish. When Barney was five years old her family spent the summer at New York's Long Beach Hotel where Oscar Wilde happened to be speaking on his American lecture tour. Wilde scooped her up as she ran past him fleeing a group of small boys, held her out of their reach then sat her down on his knee and told her a story. The next day he joined Barney and her mother on the beach, where their conversation changed the course of Alice's life, inspiring her to pursue art seriously, despite, years later, her husband's disapproval. She later studied under Carolus-Duran and James McNeill Whistler. Many of Alice Pike Barney's paintings are now in the Smithsonian American Art Museum.
Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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