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Vaughn Sills explores two areas in photography that often overlap. She is interested in how we live and develop culture within the natural world and how we influence that world; she looks at the ways that the environment, both the natural and the built, helps to create our individual experiences of reality. She has also focused on the experience of people who have been marginalized, denied their voices, or significantly hampered by who they are — women, the poor, and people of color. Her photographs explore how our physical and social environments influence and reflect our deepest inner experiences.


Sill’s photographs have been exhibited in art, history, and botanic museums and galleries; they are in the collections of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, DeCordova Museum, Harvard Art Museum, the Polaroid Collection, and the Eaton Vance Collection, among others. Several significant awards have helped support her practice and recognized her work; twice her work was awarded an Artist’s Fellowship in Photography by the Massachusetts Cultural Council. Other grants and awards have come from the Artadia Dialogue for Art and Culture, the Polaroid Foundation, and The New England Foundation for the Arts. Her books, Places for the Spirit, Traditional African American Gardens (2010), and One Family (2001) have earned awards from the Garden Writers Association and the Magazine Association for the Southeast.

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