the GAFFER: Celeste Gainey
About the Author
Celeste Gainey is the author of the chapbook In the land of speculation & seismography (Seven Kitchens Press, 2011), runner-up for the 2010 Robin Becker Prize, established to recognize a chapbook of poetry by a lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered or queer writer with no previous book or chapbook publication. She has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and has been a guest on Prosody, the public radio show on NPR affiliate, WESA-FM, featuring the work of national writers.
Her poems have recently appeared or are forthcoming in BLOOM, 5AM, Columbia Poetry Review, HEArt, Wild Apples, Adanna, Writers at Work, Madroad: The Breadline Press West Coast Anthology, and other publications. In addition to reading her work widely, Gainey has been a featured presenter, alongside poets Jan Beatty and Aaron Smith, at the 2012 Other Words Conference in St. Augustine, Florida, and a featured reader for BLOOM literary journalís tenth anniversary celebration at the 2014 AWP Conference in Seattle.
In 1974, Gainey was the first woman to be admitted as a gaffer to the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees (IATSE). In addition to lighting dozens of documentaries, she worked for such programs as 60 Minutes, ABC Close-Up, and 20/20, as well as on feature films, most memorably Dog Day Afternoon, Taxi Driver, and The Wiz. She was an early member of New York Women in Film and Television, serving two terms as President, from 1983-1985.
Born and raised in Santa Barbara, California, Gainey holds a BFA in Film and Television from the Tisch School of the Arts at New York University and an MFA in Creative Writing/Poetry from Carlow University. After many years of living on both the west and east coasts, she now lives with her partner, the novelist and screenwriter Elise DíHaene, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. She has spent over thirty-five years working with light.