Annus Horribilis [Horrible Year]

While 2020 has been a tough year filled with multiple losses, isolation, personal health issues and battles with my anxiety, it has also been a year of growth when it comes to art. I have been able to watch artist talks from across the country, participate in book clubs in other cities, find new creatives on Instagram who excite and motivate me, and connect with insightful curators who have helped me hone my voice and direction. Nothing has been easy this year, but who said growth is easy? It’s painful and it’s terrifying, but it’s renewing. Congratulations everyone on surviving 2021! In closing 2020, I share an online exhibition I am included in that was curated by Adam Cable in collaboration with Float Photo: Annus Horribilis [Horrible Year].

artwork displaying the remnants of charcoal soap letters on a white vintage tablecloth with lace border on a black background. The letters read "It will go away like things go away," a quote by Donald Trump.
August 5th, 2020 by Britt Thomas

Text by Curator Adam Cable | Resiliency characterizes the life of anyone pursuing creative work. Despite circumstances, setbacks, and failures, artists continue to find new ways to push forward and around whatever barricades they encounter. As we near the end of this annus horribilis, a horrible year, we wanted to create an exhibition that celebrates quiet victories, earnestness, and drive to continue making in spite of circumstances. While Annus Horribilis does not necessarily focus on the events of 2020, it does reflect many experiences of those continuing to live and create within a particularly challenging time amidst varied and significant losses. All works submitted were made this year but not exhibited or published before now.

Receiving nearly 150 submissions from across the world, we aimed to build a cohesive selection of works from a largely open-ended call for entries. Alongside these images are excerpts from accepted artists’ short statements, describing how these respective practices were forced to acknowledge and evolve with our current times. Several artists, listed under honorable mentions, provided work that we could not include in the main exhibition but still wanted to share. We gratefully acknowledge the time and effort spent by all who submitted to this project.

Looking ahead to 2021, it is our hope that this compilation of images inspires a sense of resolve and anticipation as we continue forward, together, into the unknown.

Selected Artists / Mateo Guevara Lemeland, Britt Thomas, Charlotte Roger, Megan Bent, Vanessa Johnson, Cora Angel, Fahsai Janjamsai, Mia Thompson, Nathan Rochefort, Julianne Nash, Vassilis Konstantinou, Chelsea Hirons, Taylor Galloway, Josh Slan and Granville Carroll.

Honorable mentions/ Sean Wang, Kathryn Weinstein, Kyra Johnson, Sebastian Sarti, Jennifer Sakai, Lily LaGrange, Emily Mueller, Balázs Varga, Matteo Capone, Sharon Draghi, Cree Vitti, Aaron DuRall, Presh Johnson-Arabitg, Amy Fleming, André Ramos-Woodard, Elizabeth Bailey, Lindsey Kennedy, Sebastian Siadecki, Joey Aronhalt, Cristina Embil and Roger E. Echegoyen.