Vaughn Sills: Inside Outside

February 5 - March 1, 2020
Opening Reception: Friday, February 7, 2020, 5:00-8:00 pm
Cupcakes & Conversation with the Artists: Saturday, February 29, 2020, 3:00-5:00 pm, Artists' Talks at 3:30 pm

  • Vaughn Sills

    Double Tulips, Northumberland Strait, archival pigment print, 21 x 14 and 30 x 20 inches, 2015.

    Double Tulips, Northumberland Strait
  • Vaughn Sills

    Queen Anne's Lace, Bedeque, archival pigment print, 21 x 14 and 30 x 20 inches, 2016.

    Queen Anne's Lace, Bedeque
  • Vaughn Sills

    Coral Peonies, Northumberland Strait, archival pigment print, 21 x 14 and 30 x 20 inches, 2017.

    Coral Peonies, Northumberland Strait
  • Vaughn Sills

    Roses, Wright's Pond, archival pigment print, 21 x 14 and 30 x 20 inches, 2019.

    Roses, Wright's Pond
  • Vaughn Sills

    Dahlias, Northumberland Strait, archival pigment print, 21 x 14 and 30 x 20 inches, 2019.

    Dahlias, Northumberland Strait
  • Vaughn Sills

    Japanese Anemone, Albany, PEI, archival pigment print, 21 x 14 and 30 x 20 inches, 2019.

    Japanese Anemone, Albany, PEI
  • Vaughn Sills

    Thistle, Northumberland Strait, archival pigment print, 21 x 14 and 30 x 20 inches, 2019.

    Thistle, Northumberland Strait
  • Vaughn Sills

    Coxcomb, Northumberland Strait, archival pigment print, 21 x 14 and 30 x 20 inches, 2019.

    Coxcomb, Northumberland Strait

Artist Page
Press Release
Goslow, Brian. "Capsule Previews: January/Febrary 2020." Artscope Magazine, January/February 2020, p65.
"A Discussion with Artists On-Kyeong Seong and Vaughn Sills." Kingston Blog, February 5, 2020.
Spring, Elin and Révy, Suzanne. "Best Photo Picks February 2020." What Will You Remember? February 5, 2020.

Artist Statement

I created the first of these still-life images when I was drawn to photograph a small bouquet of purple anemones and it occurred to me to place them before one of my landscape photographs from Prince Edward Island, my ancestral home. It was mid-winter, such beauty was much coveted; and I succumbed to buying more flowers and culled through my photographs looking for possible "backgrounds." I soon found I had created a set of parameters for these quietly surreal photographs

My process now includes making new land and seascapes, also on PEI; and once back in my studio, for each bundle of flowers, I find the right background image, choose a vase, and obsessively arrange the flowers until the scene comes together. An equally important element is natural light, which I have the least control over, and often shifts as I am photographing. It comes from two windows and a skylight and sometimes, happily, creates reflections on the glass and shadows that could not exist against a real sky.

The fundamental concept of this work, expressed in the title "Inside Outside" is a juxtaposition of the highly cultivated versus wild, untamed natural world. Domestic life is represented by garden-grown flowers in vases and alludes to women's work in gardens and in the home; while the outside world is seen in the images of seas and land.

A second layer has to do with mortality and beauty. The landscapes and seascapes I make are part of my series about grieving for my mother – they are expressions of sadness, love, memory, and connection. Flowers, so short-lived, their beauty so ephemeral, remind us of death and contrast with the feeling of eternity and infinitude implied by the sea and rolling hills. As it happens, my mother was an unusually beautiful woman; the metaphor is obvious.

The planet's emergency today inevitably adds a third layer of meaning. The seas are rising; the shores will be submerged – all by our hand. The farmer's field I lovingly photograph pollutes the local streams and ponds; a good number of the glorious flowers that I purchase are delivered to the flower market by trucks and probably airplanes that contribute to climate change. We can no longer assume that the natural world we have known is eternal.



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