- L. Ann Wheeler (author, artist)
- Elæ Moss (artist)
Nonfiction, Poetry, Graphic Novel, Art, Visual Poetry, Children, Women, Mothers, Maps, Digital Media, Digital, Collage, Archive, History, Place, New York, Coney Island
Publication media type
“L. Ann Wheeler’s powerful debut examines why we leave and what happens to those who stay. This richly layered multi-genre book digs deep into personal and collective histories through archival investigation and imaginative rendering, reanimating their ghostly traces in the light of the present. The collection captures our ruined world with compassion and a collective crying out against loss and exploitation. Its lovingly sutured heart will leave you with the tender fortitude to endure.” — Megan Kaminski
“In this haunting book, Lesley Ann Wheeler searches through a century of Coney Island’s abandoned, collecting a multimedia archive from the annals of history and her imagination. At the heart of the work is a sort of memorial for the city’s tiny ghosts — and an investigation of their pull on her heart. It’s hard to look away.” — Sarah Manguso
“Poetry, prose, documentary, collage — this mesmerizing book puzzles together a tormenting mistake, the peril of its discovery, and public accounts of women out of options. It begins, in a way, in the marsh grass at Coney Island, 1922, and ends at the head of a line of 21st century Kansas City schoolchildren whose teacher leads them, walking backwards. What is being passed to the reader feels obliging, covert, transactional, an ‘identity in an envelope with / the flap tucked in.’ Abandoners is a work of consequence.” — Brian Blanchfield
Abandoners is part non-fiction, part poetry, and part graphic novel and exists at the intersection of women’s lives in transition, and the relentless fantasy of Coney Island. It’s framed by the story of a woman who abandoned her baby in Coney Island Creek in 1922, and the re-telling and re-casting of her story in a way that lifts it out of the archives and makes her human.
About the Contributor(s)
L. Ann Wheeler is a writer, artist, and teacher in Los Angeles. She holds degrees in creative writing from the Pratt Institute and the Iowa Writers' Workshop. Her poetry and prose has appeared in Omniverse, Bone Bouquet, Entropy, ILK, among others. She's taught elementary school on Coney Island, college writing in Iowa, Missouri, and Kansas, and high school in California. Abandoners is her first book.
Elæ Moss is a multimodal artist-researcher, curator, designer, and educator. Seeking Speculative Solidarities, they employ analog and digital media to investigate human, institutional and ecological systems and to iterate open source strategies for ecological and social change. Recent projects have shown at La Mama Galleria, EFA Project Space, STWST/Ars Electronica, Usdan Gallery, Judson Church, the Segal Center, SOHO20, Dixon Place, and the Exponential Festival, among others. Select publications include Big Echo, Tagvverk, Vestiges, Matters of Feminist Practice, The Transgender Narratives Anthology, Choice Words: Writers on Abortion, The Brooklyn Poets Anthology, and Resist Much, Obey Little: Inaugural Poems to the Resistance. Books include Ground, Blood Altas, Overview Effect, Sweet and Low: Indefinite Singular, Bodies of Work, and The Precarity Bodyhacking Work-Book and Guide. Moss is a Professor at Pratt Institute, and the developer / founder of the Operating System + Liminal Lab. More at: https://onlywhatican.net and http://theoperatingsystem.org.