For those of you looking to increase home security, consider hanging upside-down
pots from a tree in your front yard. Vaughn Sills, the Boston photographer behind
the series Places for the Spirit: Traditional African American Gardens, says an
upside-down vessel is meant to capture evil spirits. Sills traveled through the
South from 1985 to 2005 and took black and white photographs of African-American
folk gardens created with these mystical purposes in mind. Her works will be on
display June 28-Sept. 29 at the Cleveland Botanical Garden's Guren Art Gallery.
Along the way, Sills met intriguing characters behind the gardens such as Annie
Belle Sturghill of Athens, Ga., who thoughtfully and intentionally placed rumpled
aluminum foil and empty egg cartons in her garden (pictured left). "She told me
she goes out every day and rearranges them," Sills says. "Things that reflect light
are really important, because they're reflections of the divine."