Peggy Thurston Farrell is an associate professor of art at Carroll University where she teaches printmaking, advanced media studies, design and is gallery director. Farrell received her MFA in Printmaking from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee in 1976. She did her undergraduate work at Carroll College in Waukesha, Wisconsin, graduating with a degree in Art Education in 1972.
Her work has been widely exhibited and collected. Over the years her work has evolved from the two-dimensional print medium to collaged, painted and silkscreened three-dimensional paper and wood constructions.
Farrell’s work has been shown in both solo and group exhibitions across the United States, Japan and regionally, including the Milwaukee Art Museum, the University of Tennessee’s Fine Arts Gallery, Tory Folliard Gallery, the Philadelphia Print Club, the Wisconsin Visual Artists Biennial Exhibitions at the Haggerty Museum and the Anderson Arts Center and most recently, Southern Graphics International Traveling Print Exhibition. In 2001 she was awarded the Professional Dimensions Sacajawea commission and in 2008 won the Waukesha Public Library commission to create a five-part relief piece titled Evolution of Expression that can be viewed in the new book area of the library. In the spring of 2012, she was awarded one of the Waukesha Guitartown commissions to paint a small guitar in honor of musician and inventor Les Paul.
Her current work exhibited in this show, explores the relationship of ancient and contemporary symbols, which began with a trip to China in spring 2001 where she observed the ubiquitous use of symbols. Upon her return home, Farrell noticed symbols in her own surroundings and began to silkscreen and collage layers of these icons and images from many parts of her life and travels. When the symbols were repeated again and again, she noticed new symbols emerging that challenged what and how we see.