Cyrus Grace Dunham

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Cyrus Grace Dunham
Born (1992-01-28) January 28, 1992 (age 30)
New York City, U.S.
Alma materBrown University
  • Writer
  • actor
  • activist
Years active2014–present
RelativesLena Dunham (sister)

Cyrus Dunham (/ˈdʌnəm/ DUN-əm; born January 28, 1992) is an American writer, actor, and activist.[1][2] Dunham is a published author, whose debut book, A Year Without A Name: A Memoir, was a Lambda Literary Award finalist.[3]

Early life[edit]

Dunham was born and raised in New York City.[4] His mother, Laurie Simmons, is an artist and photographer, and his father, Carroll Dunham, is a painter.[5][6] Dunham's older sister, Lena, is a writer, actress, and producer.[citation needed]

Dunham attended St. Ann's School in New York City.[7] She wrote for the school newspaper and yearbook and spoke at the graduation.[4] As a high school student in 2009, Dunham received the Poetry Society of America's Louise Louis/Emily F. Bourne Student Poetry Award for the poem Twin Oaks, which was judged for the competition by American poet Matthew Rohrer.[4][8]

Dunham graduated from Brown University with a degree in urban studies in May 2014.[9] He was a contributing writer for the student weekly The College Hill Independent.[10]


Writing and activism[edit]

Dunham has written for The New Yorker, Artforum and Granta; as well as Transgender Herstory in 99 Objects: Legends and Mythologies at the ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives, UNCOUNTED: Call & Response at Vienna Secession and the AL-UGH-ORIES monograph, as part of Nicole Eisenman's exhibition at the New Museum.[11][12][13]

In 2016, Dunham published his first collection of poetry and short essays, The Fool. The publication is a free, online-only web-book published by Curse of Cherifa.[14][15]

Dunham's memoir, A Year Without a Name, was published in October 2019 by Little, Brown and Company. The book was met with positive reviews from The Atlantic, Kirkus Reviews and them.[16] A short section of the book was published online in The New Yorker.[17]

Dunham has collaborated frequently with transgender activist Tourmaline; their work together includes public speaking, writing, and performance.[18][19][20][21]


Dunham's first film appearance was in the 2006 short, Dealing, as June, a 13-year-old art dealer.[22] Dealing was written and directed by Dunham's older sister.

In 2010, Dunham starred in a second film written and directed by his sister called Tiny Furniture in which Dunham's sister and mother played characters in the film that were loosely based on their own family.

Dunham stars as Junior in the film Happy Birthday, Marsha! about the gay activist Marsha P. Johnson and transgender activist Sylvia Rivera in the hours before the Stonewall riots. Dunham also appeared in artist A.K. Burns' multi-channel video installation A Smeary Spot.[23]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Grace Dunham - The New Yorker". The New Yorker.
  2. ^ Asked & Answered | Laurie Simmons. The New York Times.
  3. ^ "a year without a name - Google Search". Retrieved 2020-11-23.
  4. ^ a b c "Tiny Furniture Press Kit from IFC Films" (PDF) (Press release). p. 7. Archived from the original (PDF) on September 16, 2012. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  5. ^ Morgan Falconer. About this artist: Carroll Dunham. The Museum of Modern Art.
  6. ^ About Laurie Simmons. Art in the Twenty First Century, Public Broadcasting Service (PBS).
  7. ^ Anderson, Jenny (July 20, 2010). "At St. Ann's, Increased Stability, but Also Controversy". The New York Times. para. 3. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  8. ^ "Grace Dunham - Poetry Society of America". Retrieved April 8, 2022.
  9. ^ Weinstein, Michael (April 16, 2010). "Big names from big screen visit College Hill". The Brown Daily Herald. para. 4. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  10. ^ Issue #3 - The Y Archived January 15, 2014, at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ Grace Dunham. The New Yorker
  12. ^ "Transgender Hirstory in 99 Objects: Legends and... - Museum of Transgender Hirstory & Art". Museum of Transgender Hirstory & Art.
  13. ^ "Uncounted : Emily Roysdon". Archived from the original on December 23, 2015.
  14. ^ "Grace Dunham - The Fool". Retrieved April 20, 2016.
  15. ^ "Curse of Cherifa". Retrieved April 20, 2016.
  16. ^ Dunham, Cyrus (September 4, 2018). A Year Without a Name. ISBN 9780316444958.
  17. ^ Dunham, Cyrus Grace (8 August 2019). "A Year Without a Name". The New Yorker. Retrieved 2020-11-23.
  18. ^ "Touch One Another - talk by Reina Gossett & Grace Dunham - Reina Gossett". Reina Gossett. May 5, 2015. Retrieved April 20, 2016.
  19. ^ "Talking with Reina Gossett and Grace Dunham About Everyday Activism and Why Empathy is Everything | Autostraddle". Autostraddle. November 30, 2001. Retrieved April 20, 2016.
  20. ^ "Grace Dunham - The Fool". Retrieved April 20, 2016.
  21. ^ "Transgender Hirstory in 99 Objects: Legends & Mythologies | ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives at the USC Libraries". Retrieved April 20, 2016.
  22. ^ Musetto, V.A. (November 6, 2010). "All in the family". New York Post. Retrieved October 8, 2012.
  23. ^ "A Smeary Spot" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on October 23, 2015.

External links[edit]