08 February 2022

Nancy Floyd Talks About Her Exhibition At PhEST Thanks To The PhMuseum Grant

08 February 2022 - Written by PhMuseum

The American visual artist reflects on her practice and offers advice to new candidates after her project Weathering Time was selected among the submissions of the PhMuseum 2021 Photography Grant and exhibited at the festival in Monopoli, Italy last summer.

Images of Weathering Time installation along the port of Monopoli, Itay © PhEST

“We are a great peninsula jutting into the Mediterranean sea and at times we forget about it,” says writer Franco Cassano talking about Southern Italy in his book Il Pensiero Meridiano (1996). Starting from this premise, PhEST has established itself as one of the most relevant events in the region dedicated to photography, music, art and contaminations since its launch in 2016. Having followed the festival's development over the years, we are very proud to renew our collaboration that will see for the fourth consecutive year an applicant of the PhMuseum Photography Grant displaying their work to their audience, which last year was comprised of more than 150,000 visitors. Last year's winner Nancy Floyd was not able to attend because of the pandemic. Yet we talked to her to understand what it meant and her advice for this year's applicants.

Hi Nancy, let's start from your project. What is its most significant feature for you and how has this affected your life ever since you started?

Weathering Time is a lifelong art project. Over time it has morphed and how it affects me differs, depending on context. When I show the photographs to family and friends, it’s about us. We laugh and share stories. When I’m working on an exhibition or a book, it’s more clinical. I become a detective analyzing the images to see which ones work best next to each other.  Finally, since the death of my mother-in-law in 2001 and my father in 2002, at times I feel a deep, dark sadness and longing for those I miss. As losses accumulate, the reality of my project’s end result is more present.

Images from Weathering Time, the project selected for a solo show at PhEST in 2021 © Nancy Floyd

Beyond your personal evolution, the work allows you to keep track of the changes in the objects exhibited, such as clothes and technology. Is this an important aspect for you or an unexpected consequence of it?

Initially, Weathering Time was just about the ageing body. Only later, when I began to put the photographs together for a video in 2002, did I discover the possibilities of expanding the project beyond the idea of ageing. Now, I’ll include my cell phone or a television, for example, if I haven’t included them in my photos for a few years.

Why do you think it is important to show your own work as an artist and how did you collaborate with PhEST?

When I feel I have something to say, I like to share it with others. However, to share the work I must hone my idea(s). I learn more about my topic and sometimes it influences future work. I grow as an artist this way. The only way this collaboration could have worked this past year was remotely, due to the pandemic. It was a simple process to collaborate with Giovanni Troilo and Arianna Rinaldo, see their proposal, send the digital images to be printed on site and enjoy the final result.

Weathering Time's installation in the port of Monopoli, Itay © PhEST

Do you have any advice for the new applicants to the PhMuseum Photography Grants? 

Be willing to edit tightly, even if you must remove some of your favourite pieces. If feeling insecure with your edit, show it to a few people you can trust to give critical feedback.

Aside from Weathering Time, are you currently working or intend to work on different projects? 

This fall I had a solo exhibition of new work titled Walking Through the Desert with My Eyes Closed. The mixed-media installation of eleven photographs, seven videos, and one sculptural piece explored the fragility of life as I saw it while making my way through desert landscapes. This year, I will start a new body of work about our relationship with trees and their importance in our lives.


PhEST was born out of the need to give back a voice to the thousand identities that form the “sea within the lands”, the need to redefine a new, original imagery. The necessity is not to erase the distance that the Mediterranean creates among these identities, because this sea, infact, creates them and blends them. The need is rather to stitch back together the divide between reality and its representation, beyond the theater of truth, beyond that stage of the real that the West has often set up. This year another photographers will be select by PhEST's team among the submissions of the PhMuseum 2022 Photography Grant and invited to exhibit at the Italian festival this summer. To get considered for this prize, simply present your work before 17 February at

Weathering Time's installation in the port of Monopoli, Itay © PhEST


Nancy Floyd (USA, 1956) has been a visual artist for 40 years. Her interests include the ageing female body, the passage of time, and our relationship with the environment.  She uses photography and video to address the ways in which lens-based media can connect deeply with experience and memory.

PhEST is a festival founded in Monopoli, Italy, dedicated to photography, cinema, music, art, contaminations. PhEST has entrusted the artistic direction to Giovanni Troilo and the photography curatorship to Arianna Rinaldo.


The PhMuseum Photography Grant has established itself as a leading prize in the industry over the past ten years, renowned for celebrating the importance of contemporary photography and supporting the careers of emerging artists through monetary prizes and various opportunities across international festivals and online media. You are welcome to present your work before 17 February 2021 at 11.59 pm (GMT). Learn more and apply at

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