Patty Carroll | Biography

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Patty Carroll has been known for her use of highly intense, saturated color photographs since the 1970’s. Her most recent project, “Anonymous Women,” consists of a 3-part series of studio installations made for the camera, addressing women and their complicated relationships with domesticity. By camouflaging the figure in drapery and/or domestic objects, Carroll creates a dark and humorous game of hide-and-seek between her viewers and the Anonymous Woman. The photographs were published as a monograph, Anonymous Women, officially released in January, 2017 by Daylight Books, and most recently Anonymous Women: Domestic Demise published in 2020 by Aint-Bad Books.

The Anonymous Woman series has been exhibited internationally and has won multiple awards including Carroll being acknowledged as one of Photolucida’s “Top 50” in 2014 and 2017. Her work has been featured in prestigious blogs and international magazines such as the Huffington Post, The Cut, Ain’t Bad Magazine, and BJP in Britain. Her work has been shown internationally in many one-person exhibits in China and Europe, as well as the USA. (White Box Museum, Beijing, Art Institute of Chicago, Royal Photographic Society, Bath, England, among others.) She has participated in over 100 group exhibitions nationally and internationally, and her work is included in many public and private collections. After teaching photography for many years, Carroll has enthusiastically returned to the studio in order to delight viewers with her playful critique of home and excess. She is currently Artist in Residence at Studios Inc. in Kansas City, Missouri.

Patty Carroll has her BFA from the University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana in Graphic Design, and her Master of Science (MS) in Photography from the Institute of Design at IIT, Chicago. Since leaving graduate school, in 1972, she has taught photography continuously at the University level, both full and part-time. Carroll was Adjunct Full Professor at School of the Art Institute of Chicago until 2014, and previously taught at Columbia College in Chicago, The Institute of Design at IIT and the Royal College of Art in London, as well as other universities. Carroll is an Adobe Certified Instructor in Photoshop. She has participated in numerous group and one-person exhibitions, and has work in several museums internationally. She is the photographic author of 6 books; Spirited Visions a book and exhibit of portraits of Chicago artists in 1992 with James Yood, Culture is Everywhere, published by Prestel in 2002 with Victor Margolin, and Living the Life: The World of Elvis Tribute Artists, 2005, and Man Bites Dog: Hot Dog Culture in America, with Bruce Kraig 2012, and the monograph of her series, Anonymous Woman, published by Daylight Books in 2016 and Anonymous Women: Domestic Demise published n 2020 by Aint-Bad Books . Her work is also included in various Photography anthologies.

Selected one-person exhibits include “Are You Lonesome Tonight” at Royal Photographic Society in Bath, England in 1996, “Elvis?” at the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago in 1999, and “Dark and Deadly: Photographs and Digital Movie Posters”, at The Art Institute of Chicago in 2004. Since 2010, her “Anonymous Women: Draped” series was shown at White Box Museum in Beijing, (2011) at Shanghai University Gallery (2010), several University galleries and museums, and at the Cultural Center in Chicago in 2012. In 2015, the series was exhibited at Zhejiang Art Museum in Hangzhou, China (2015,) The Photographers Association in Ningbo, China (2015), and Daura Gallery, in Lynchburg, Virginia (2014). She was the recipient of an Artist Fellowship Grant from the Illinois Arts Council in 2003 and 2020. The photographs have won various awards in international competitions, and been featured in various print magazines and online blogs, most importantly the Huffington Post, Feature Shoot, The British Journal of Photography, The Observer, Trendland, and The Cut among many others.