In She’s Back, Patty Carroll’s most recent photographs in her Anonymous Women series, we find Carroll’s domestic heroine/victim, plucky and hapless as ever. With only a few bits of her visible, she succumbs time and again to her zest for décor in reimagined domestic interiors that range from the wild west to game night. She is both the victim of her obsessions as well as the invisible creator. She is sad and funny, silly and serious, slapstick and tragic, but always game for more.
Carroll’s slight-of-hand commentary on society is so skillful and her mastery of color, light and composition so convincing that the subversive quality of the work may at first fly under the radar. Who is this woman and why does she keep showing up for greater hijinks and eventual demise? Theatrical sets of puzzles and games in some photos echo the confusing information of our time and our heroine tries to make sense of it. In other images, a cabin refuge locks our gal away in a western myth. The keen observer soon becomes aware of a greater complexity, paradox and the deeper implications suggested at first laugh as dark humor.
Patty Carroll’s photographs are in the permanent collections of the Museum of Contemporary Photography, Chicago, IL; The Art Institute of Chicago, IL; The John and Mabel Ringling Museum, Sarasota, FL; Polaroid Corporation, International Collection, Cambridge, MA; Museum of Modern Art, NY, NY; Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.; Biblioteque Nationale, Paris, France and others.
Patty Carroll has received numerous grants and awards, conducted workshops in the US and Internationally, participated in over 100 panels and conferences and is featured in numerous online publications and blogs. Her studio is in Chicago, Illinois.