ELÆ MOSS | SPECULATIVE SOLIDARITIES
Hello, friend, and welcome. I’m Elæ Moss, and I’m glad you’re here.
My pronouns are they / them(me) / zie / zir. [why is this important?]
Gathered on this site are works across media, representing my efforts both public and private to consider our possibilities for system evolution: of our bodies, our relationships to nonhuman allies, our kinship networks and communities, the ways we engage with labor and creative practice, and the infrastructures we build and use daily. There’s lots here to read and explore, projects and programs to get involved with, and ways to work with me both one-on-one and/or in community.
This site is always evolving, but it exists as primarily an archival record of my work and practice across mediums, methods, and time. Please visit AUTONOMOUS MECHANICS, my studio / lab site, for more information about current project and program offerings, tools and resources.
For a longer intro into my practice and what drives it, read on below!
INDEX / ORIENTATION
Here, you’ll find:
- documentation of my interdisciplinary [PRACTICE]
- information around my [FACILITATION] / teaching / coaching work, including workshops, lectures, and open resources for public use
- a [MEDIA] page, where you can watch video, access and/or download texts and link to other materials
- a calendar / archive of past and forthcoming public [HAPPENINGS] including exhibitions, performances and other events
- an invitation to engage / other ways to [WORK WITH ME]
GO DEEPER: WHO IS IT FOR AND WHAT IS IT FOR?
This work can be and feel a little unwieldy: it resists easy categorization by design, as the process of re/orientation around language as way to hack and make intentional our relationship with perception is not only something I write about or engage with in a “studio” capacity, but rather employ as a constant investigation. Perception, articulation, and documentation of my body’s experience in and with its surrounds, and then of both micro and macro systems with which I interact, is the key to my practice. The media used and strategies employed in my work are not a question of identity (ie: “artist,” “painter,” “writer”) or role in the invented industries of human history (“professor,” “publisher,” “curator”) but a site of discerning the appropriate material, form, and delivery system or structure to ask and investigate certain questions in different contexts. This practice also often has been subject to the chance operational constraints of scarcity and precarity: limitations of space, time, and resources mean that works has often taken textual, virtual and/or conceptual form not entirely because of preference but because of systemic conditions. Intentional investigation and consideration of this, too, becomes part of the process: interfacing with other logics, generating system intelligence.
It also takes place in my / our bodies and how we / they interface with the definitions we’ve been conditioned in / named by––another space in which my practice is always happening in deeply personal ways that I seek to explore and make publicly legible so that others might feel invited in / offered possibility to explore and expand in their own selves / somatic experience / kinship and interpersonal networks. A troubling (and often refusal) of standard categorization has been a long-ongoing theme in continuously sloughing away and crafting my understanding of my gender identity (nonbinary, they/them), my sexuality (queer/pan/enm), my relationship to my nervous system and brain (neuroqueer), and my understanding of autonomous heterogeneity / anarchy as the political framework most closely resembling the ecosystem intelligence into which we, as humans, have been introduced.
Key to all of this is an outward facing documentation and offering, at all times, with the belief that others might use and benefit from these investigations and articulations. This is what I mean by “speculative solidarities”: this work engages always in the speculative, meaning that it asks questions of what might be possible for each of us in our bodies, with each other, and in this world. When I work through strategies for shifting systems, and test / develop tools for making change that build on micro-hacks (to language, somatic practice, etc) in the service of re-imagined structures (of kinship, labor, resource sharing, etc), I offer those freely. I do so in hopes that I might be able to increase others’ capacity and speed in growth and service, ultimately increasing resources for all of us individually and as a whole, opening potential that feels inaccessible in our current scarcity cycles.
Depending on the context, sure, I might refer to this work “art” or “scholarship” or “citizen science” or “philosophy”; code-switching is an essential and constant practice in my life so that the work remains legible and reaches those that might benefit from it. But truly, if we could understand ministry as a lifelong commitment to strategizing solidarity, more the act of “rendering service, aid, or medicine; furnishing means of relief or remedy” of its origins, perhaps that might be a way to understand what I’ve always felt called to do. It gives me purpose, and sometimes it aligns with a paid position, but usually not. I’ve learned over the years I just need to leap, and knit nets for myself in midair rather than waiting for resources. It’s scary, but I’m going to keep jumping into that void, because I think the alternative is worse (despite what the traumatized body is led to believe). I want you to leap with me. I think joy is resistance. I think there’s greater possibilities that we’ve ever believed.
In solidarity and possibility
Lenapehoking [Brooklyn NY] 2021
My practice orients itself around the belief that engagement in creative practice allows humans to use a range of materials, including words, to assist in our better understanding ourselves and those with whom we co-operate within this ecosystem. As part of this process, I believe it is essential that we reconsider our role as reproducer of colonial, institutional forms and modes of power. We must engage in the intentional re/orientation around our relationship to place, to biome, and to each other. As part of this process, I seek to re/orient my own conditioned perceptions around “place” and the “mapped” world, recognizing that I live and work on the unceded land traditionally stewarded by the Munsee-speaking Lenape peoples, specifically the Canarsee Lenape, in Lenapehoking (what is now known as Brooklyn, NY). I ask you to join me in acknowledging the Lenape community, their elders past and present, as well as future generations, as not only this landscape’s original inhabitants, but as holders of immense, vital intelligence in collaboration with its nonhuman inhabitants and topographies. For movement towards true abolition, and in the speculative seeking of true antiracist, decolonized futures I believe we must not only acknowledge this lineage but prioritize its knowing, and that of its people in the present day and years ahead in service of sustainable, just futures.
I encourage you, and/or your organization, to develop your own land acknowledgement, and am immensely grateful to the labors of those who worked to develop the Guide to Indigenous Land and Territorial Acknowledgements for Cultural Institutions.