Michael Gitlin was born in Bluffton, Indiana. He divides his time between Brooklyn and the Hudson Valley. His work has been screened at numerous venues, including the Museum of Modern Art in New York, the Toronto International Film Festival, the Full Frame Documentary Festival, the New York Video Festival at Lincoln Center and the 1997 Whitney Biennial. His film, The Birdpeople, is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art. He is the recipient of a 2006 Guggenheim Fellowship. His work has also been supported by the Jerome Foundation, the New York State Council on the Arts, and the New York Foundation for the Arts. Gitlin received an MFA from Bard College. He teaches at Hunter College in New York City.