Anne Tardos is a poet, visual artist, and composer born in Cannes, France. She lived as a small child in German-occupied Paris, then after the war moved with her parents to Budapest, where she learned Hungarian. The Hungarian revolution resulted in her having then to move to Vienna, where she learned German and attended a French high school. After completing high school, she spent two years in Paris. In 1966 she moved to the United States. Tardos received her education in film and the visual arts, attending the Vienna Film Academy from 1963–65, then the Art Students League of New York, from 1966–70, for which she received grants from the Ford Foundation for the years 1967–70.
Her books of multilingual poems and graphics include The Dik-dik's Solitude: New and Selected Works (Granary Books, 2002), A Noisy Nightingale Understands a Tiger's Camouflage Totally (Belladonna Books, 2003), Uxudo (1999), Mayg-shem Fish (1995), and Cat Licked the Garlic (1992).
She is among the guest faculty at Naropa University (2008, 1994) and has lectured at Bard College (2008), UC Berkeley (2003), SUNY-Buffalo (2003), The New School (2001), University of Hawaii-Manoa (1999), The School of Poetry of Vienna (1996, 1994, 1993), University of Szeged, Hungary (1993), UC San Diego (1990), School of Visual Arts, New York (1987), SUNY-Albany (1986), and the Brooklyn Museum Art School (1982).
Tardos is the author of the multilingual performance work Among Men, which was produced by West German Radio Westdeutscher Rundfunk (WDR), in Cologne. Among Men consists of 17 music scores and two reader’s scores, with text based on encyclopedia entries for female artists and the first names of the men whose entries fall between theirs. The scores utilize collaged sound and visual elements from female musicians and artists, with variation allowed for in performance according to the visibility of a note on the score. Among Men was also performed live at Roulette, New York (1996); the Galerie Krinzinger, Vienna (1994); and the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics at Naropa University, Boulder, CO (1994).
She met Jackson Mac Low in 1975; the two lived and worked together from 1978 until his death in 2004. Thing of Beauty, New and Selected Works by Jackson Mac Low, edited by Tardos, released January 2008 by the University of California Press, provides a general outline of Mac Low’s poetic oeuvre and includes many previously unpublished texts. Tardos’s editorial work has been highly lauded, with Publishers Weekly stating that "Thing of Beauty does the best job to date in providing a window into Mac Low’s unique perspective on what constitutes poetic beauty." 154 Forties (Counterpath Press, 2012) collects Mac Low's Forties poems; and in 2015, The Complete Light Poems appeared from Chax Press, a collection of all the Light Poems by Mac Low, co-edited with Michael O'Driscoll.
For collecting many of Mac Low’s artworks, Tardos received a grant from the Judith Rothschild Foundation.
Tardos's book, I Am You (Salt Publishing, 2008), is a collection of five long poems that explore the limits of language, time, subjectivity and grief. A deeply personal elegy for Mac Low, I Am You is also a poetic inquiry into the boundaries of the human subject. A new edition was printed by BlazeVOX Books in 2016.
Her book Both Poems, (Roof Books, 2011) collects two long poems: "Pronounce," based on pronouns; and the beginning of the series NINE.
The book of poems NINE 1-126 was published by BlazeVOX Books in 2015.
In 2017, BlazeVOX Book published a collection of her poetry, written between 2009 and 2017, The Camel's Pedestal.
She is a Fellow in Poetry from the New York Foundation for the Arts.
In 2012, Tardos married the composer Michael Byron.