Peggy Macnamara is the artist in residence at the Field Museum. Her new show, Migration... is just that. The work shows the story visually... how a specific bird makes it's way to its winter home. Migration is a complicated phenomenon of nature. It is subtle and difficult to predict. The hummingbird's epic flights, as well as the monarch butterflies' triumphs are engaging stories. But what attracts her is that it's sort of a secret. We know something about it, but manage to miss it every fall and spring. It requires prolonged observation and concentration and has many variables, like the drawing process. The work is about painting aloud on a quiet subject. Visually... it's deceptively straightforward work... they look like large-scale sketchbook pages from a field manual. Macnamara is so adept as a draughtsman and colorist, she makes it a pleasure to see the "story" in each watercolor.
The curators at the Field are very complimentary about working with Peggy. They feel Macnamara amplifies the science they represent, making it more approachable. She has been at the Field for 25 years now, and is a legend of sorts. Her philosophy is that art and science go hand in hand, and she makes this connection evident through her thoughtful compositions.