Banned In DC
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Stories from the Island of Big Sur, CA
Stories from Big Sur book cover

Stories from the Island of Big Sur, California

Collected by Cynthia Connolly

Edition of 125 with original photographic c-print, signed and numbered, handmade book. Photocopied and letter-pressed with over 30 pages, this chapbook contains interviews of Big Sur resident and visitor experiences when trapped on the "Island" in 2017.

In 2016 and 2017, a series of fires followed by torrential rains precipitated mudslides that closed Highway 1 in the Big Sur area at multiple points. One eight-month closure in 2017 caused by the compromise, removal, and reconstruction of the Pfeiffer Canyon Bridge to the north and mudslides to the south. Over four hundred residents of Big Sur were confined to this enclave that they named the "Island." The interviews in this chapbook reveal the unique and resilient community in an important time in the history of Highway 1 and Big Sur. They memorialize this community in transition, coping with the constant change and shift of the land that surrounds them and that effects their everyday life.

From her visits and story collecting, Connolly is now aware that they are diligent caretakers of a land like no other and work endlessly to protect and preserve Big Sur for both residents and visitors to enjoy. This by no means reflects the entire community, but provides a glimpse into who the residents are and what makes Big Sur the place we know and love.

Look for the compendium book by Connolly, "Photographs of Highway 1, North to South, 2015-2019." On sale at the Henry Miller Memorial Library, Esalen Institute and Lucia Lodge in Big Sur, California. To buy this book from Cynthia in the US, go to the online store. (If the online store is "empty" that means Cynthia is on a road trip and not taking orders at this time. Sorry!)