Local artist chronicles sailing around the world in the exhibition, 24,000 Nautical Miles…Photos From a Circumnavigation, opening September 9, 2014

A new photography exhibition, 24,000 Nautical Miles…Photos From a Circumnavigation, chronicles the sea-going adventure of artist Monica d. Church. The exhibition opens on Tuesday, September 9, at Vassar College’s James W. Palmer Gallery in Main Building with a reception in the gallery starting at 5 pm. Church will also give a talk in the gallery on Wednesday, September 17 at noon. Nautical Miles will run through September 17 and is free and open to the public.

In the spring of 2014 Church circumnavigated the world on the 50th anniversary voyage of the University of Virginia’s Semester at Sea program. The journey lasted 112 days with 554 students visiting 16 ports. Church’s exhibition features photographs from her travels to 12 countries, including Myanmar, Ghana, South Africa, Japan, China, India and Vietnam.  More than 30 photographs will be featured.

Church made the voyage with her family. Her husband, Robert Brigham, is the Shirley Ecker Boskey Professor of History and International Relations at Vassar and he taught on the ship while their 13-year-old daughter was part of the trek as well. Church says the experience was an amazing one to have as an artist who is accustomed to often working alone. “It was a real gift,” she says, “to be able to travel the world with my family and get work done.”

Church holds an MFA from the University of Kentucky. She considers herself a painter who works with photography and says the sea voyage clarified that she is not a travel photographer but rather an artist who is interested in what she terms “international street photography” and “the composition of images.”

Although based in the Hudson Valley, Church has exhibited her work nationally and internationally, including in Chicago, Texas, New York, Vermont, Scotland and Ireland. In 2006-07, Church’s work was included in Four Points of View: Figuration in Printmaking at La Galleria Nacional del Centro Costarricense de Ciencia y Cultura in San Jose, Costa Rica. Church has also won numerous awards and fellowships for her work. These include two Dutchess County Art’s Council Individual Artist Fellowships; two awards from the Silvermine Guild Arts Center in New Canaan, Connecticut; multiple awards from the New York Foundation for the Arts & New York Council of the Arts; as well as a grant from Vassar College. More of her work can be seen at

The Palmer Gallery is open daily from 11 am - 6 pm, but calling ahead to the Office of Campus Activities is recommended.

Exhibition Event

Gallery Talk with Monica d. Church
Wednesday, September 17, 12:00pm

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Vassar College is a highly selective, coeducational, independent, residential liberal arts college founded in 1861.

Posted by Office of Communications Friday, August 22, 2014