Twenty Twenty is an exhibition of works on paper rolled out sequentially over the course of five months that presents the work of seven artists who primarily utilize photographic imagery. This exhibition was conceived of in 2019 to document and respond to the 2020 election season and was originally scheduled to open in June 2020. With the Museum’s temporary closure from early March to the end of June due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the exhibition opening was pushed back to October.
Twenty Twenty will be be changing throughout the exhibition's run with the artists creating new work and adding to, or modifying, their installations in the galleries. The second installation will open on December 6, 2020 and the third installation will open on February 7, 2021.
2020 has been historic year and the work being created by the artists now reflects their lived experience through a landmark election year, a global pandemic, and a national reckoning with systemic racial injustice and police brutality. The exhibition asks the question can a ‘slow’ museum exhibition actively participate in democracy amidst the cacophony of Tweets and abbreviated news app headlines via a medium that moves no faster that the speed of a human hand pushing a pencil?
Artists participating in the exhibition include Marti Cormand (Brooklyn, NY), Oasa DuVerney (Brooklyn, NY), Judith Eisler (Vienna, Austria and Warren, CT), Andy Mister (Beacon, NY), William Powhida (Brooklyn, NY), Gil Scullion (Middletown, CT), and Diana Shpungin (Brooklyn, NY).
The artists will be adding works to the exhibition in early December and early February creating a platform for response throughout the exhibition. Following key moments in the election cycle, the final installation of the exhibition will reflect the proceeding years’ political and social experiences through the lens of these artists’ lived experiences. The Aldrich has commissioned the seven artists to create the work for this exhibition. The exhibition will be accompanied by a newspaper, published in two editions, that will bookend the exhibition.
Organized by Richard Klein, Exhibitions Director, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.
Listen to Hindsight is, a three-episode podcast series in the radio play genre in conjunction with the exhibition Twenty Twenty. The series focuses on vignette scenes with a range of local and regional historical figures in Connecticut including women’s Suffragist Alice Paul and former NAACP Connecticut Chapter President William Webb. Actors will portray these historical figures, dramatizing social and political issues intensified this year such as voting rights, racism, and fascism through their unique perspectives as citizens from the past. These episodes will be accompanied by two public programs, see below. In addition to the episodes, further digital materials including transcripts, research images, and a teaching guide with accompanying workshop will be made available to educators and parents to use as resources for student learning.
Hindsight is podcast series is produced by Piti Theatre Company. Their mission is to create original performances and community-building events that accelerate local transformation towards joy, sustainability and justice. Piti Theatre Company will also work with Aldrich Teen Fellows and collaborate with Aldrich educators on developing digital resources for youth and family engagement with topics presented in the podcast series. This series is presented in conjunction with the exhibition Twenty Twenty. Download an interdisciplinary curriculum that follows Hindsight is. This curriculum is free and intended for teachers and parents of middle and high school students. Download the curriculum here.
The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum is thrilled to present a participatory mail art project, “The ILSSA Ballot for Twenty Twenty,” created by artists Bridget Elmer and Emily Larned in concurrence with the upcoming Twenty Twenty exhibition.
“The ILSSA Ballot for Twenty Twenty” encourages participants to reclaim language, parse dichotomies, and give voice to perspectives unrepresented in the rhetoric surrounding the 2020 US presidential election. Participants in the project will receive a custom designed, letterpress printed ballot, with an invitation to mail-in their responses for display at The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum.
The project will grow cumulatively throughout the duration of the Twenty Twenty exhibition concluding on Sunday, March 14, 2021. A limited edition of 100 ballots will be available for participants who can register through The Aldrich’s website. Ballots will be mailed directly from the artists soon after Election Day on Tuesday, November 3, 2020.
ILSSA stands for Impractical Labor in Service of the Speculative Arts, a union for reflective creative practice established in 2008 as a collaboration between the artists. ILSSA has a long-standing practice of publishing participatory, contemplative tools and resources, which often take the form of call-and-response.
Generous support for Twenty Twenty is provided by Eric Diefenbach and James Keith Brown, Kathleen O'Grady, and The O'Grady Foundation.
Top image: Andy Mister, Paris; Barcelona; La Paz; Gaza; Beirut (installation view), all 2020, Courtesy of the artist and TURN Gallery, New York, Twenty Twenty, The Aldrich Contemporary Art Museum, October 12, 2020 to March 14, 2021, Photo: Christopher E. Manning