Fergal Gaynor was born in Cork City (Ireland) in 1969, of Tipperary parents (a lecturer in Ancient Classics and a National School teacher). Educated in Cork, Sheffield, and Swansea, he was awarded a doctorate in 2002 for a thesis on D.H. Lawrence, Cézanne and modernism. Since 2000, when he co-founded the art interventionist group Art / not art, he has been continually involved in the arts, especially in his native city: regularly performing and collaborating, curating (e.g. the Cork Caucus in 2005), assisting with the SoundEye Festival, devising (e.g. The Avant: Ten Days of the Progressive Arts), editing (ER : Enclave Review) and writing criticism (chiefly for Circa Contemporary Art Magazine). He is married to the baroque violinist Marja Gaynor (née Tuhkanen) with whom he has a daughter, Eleanor.