We are pleased to announce the recipients of the 2021 PNCA Laura Russo Luminary Alumni Award: Anthony Hudson ‘13, Ellen McFadden ‘49, Lucinda Parker ‘66, and Arvie Smith ‘86.

The Laura Russo Luminary Alumni Award recognizes PNCA alumni who demonstrate excellence, impact, innovation, and integrity in their lives, work and creative practice and aims to celebrate the broad spectrum of traditional and non-traditional paths to alumni excellence.

Congratulations to our 2021 PNCA Laura Russo Luminary Alumni Award recipients!

Anthony Hudson '13

Anthony Hudson ‘13 (Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde) is a multidisciplinary artist, writer, filmmaker, and performer sometimes better known as Portland, Oregon’s premiere drag clown Carla Rossi. Anthony graduated from Pacific Northwest College of art in 2013 with a major in 2010.

Anthony was named a 2018 National Artist Fellow from the Native Arts and Cultures Foundation, a 2018 Western Arts Alliance Native Launchpad Artist, a 2019 Oregon Arts Commission Fellow, a 2021 First Peoples Fund Fellow, and has received project support and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, National Performance Network, USArtists International, the Oregon Community Foundation, the Regional Arts and Culture Council, the Portland Art Museum & NW Film Center, Portland Institute for Contemporary Art, Ucross Foundation, Caldera Arts Center, and more.

Together Anthony and Carla host and program Queer Horror, the only ongoing LGBTQ+ horror film and performance series in the country at Portland's historic Hollywood Theatre. Anthony's performances have been featured at the Portland and Seattle Art Museums, Artists Repertory Theatre, Portland Center Stage, PICA's TBA Festival, New York Theatre Workshop, La Mama, and have toured internationally.

Images courtesy of the artist.

Anthony Hudson ‘13, photo credit Wayne Bund, MFA ‘10/Gia Goodrich


Ellen McFadden ‘49

Born in 1928 in Portland, Ellen McFadden has been working in design her entire life, both as an instructor and as a freelance graphic designer in the Northwest and Iowa. Coming of age during the time when WWII veterans were returning from the war, she attended the Museum Art School (now Pacific Northwest College of Art) in the postwar years and took classes with Doug Lynch and Lloyd Reynolds, among others. At the time she also set up a “cubbyhole” office in downtown where she did prepress mechanicals for other designers and freelance calligraphy. Influenced in the early 1960s by Constructivist and New Graphic Design movements in Europe, she and her husband, Irwin McFadden, assimilated new styles and typefaces into their own practice.

In 2008, McFadden turned her focus to making paintings that incorporate pattern and vibrant color, their titles alluding to the Northwest geography and native tribes that are so ingrained in her personal history, one that she tends to dismiss by ending a conversation with, “Now back to the drawing board.” She is equally matter-of-fact when describing her work: “I see the two- dimensional surface as the basis for tension and interaction with shape and the four outside edges. Color is a part of that interaction. Perhaps that vision comes from my years of graphic design, working with a defined two-dimensional space and its restrictions.

In addition to multiple exhibitions at Ampersand Gallery, McFadden’s paintings have been featured in solo presentations at Weiden+Kennedy (Portland, OR) and she was among 34 artists selected for the Portland Biennial, 2016.

Images courtesy of Ampersand Gallery and Fine Books.

Ellen McFadden ‘49, photo credit Aaron Hewitt


Lucinda Parker '66

Among the most admired painters in the Northwest, Lucinda Parker has forged an impressive career that includes ambitious public projects in Oregon, Washington, and California. Originally from Boston, Parker received a BA jointly from Reed College and the Museum Art School (now Pacific Northwest College of Art) and an MFA from Pratt Institute. Parker taught composition, drawing, and painting at PNCA from 1972 until she retired in 2006.

Represented by Russo Lee Gallery in Portland and Linda Hodges Gallery in Seattle, Parker’s work is in collections throughout the Northwest. Major public collections include the Hallie Ford Museum of Art at Willamette University, the Portland Art Museum, and the Seattle Art Museum. Public commissions can be found at the Oregon Convention Center, Portland City Hall, and a federal courthouse in Bakersfield, California, among others. The Portland Art Museum honored Parker with a mid-career retrospective in 1995, the Boise Art Museum presented a one-person exhibition of her work in 2002, and the Hallie Ford Museum mounted a 50+ year retrospective of her career in 2019.

Images courtesy of Russo Lee Gallery.

Lucinda Parker ‘66, Portrait of Lucinda Parker by Sherrie Wolf ‘74, 2010 and Sentient Being by Lucinda Parker, 2020


Arvie Smith ‘86

Arvie Smith spent his childhood in rural Texas and South Central Los Angeles. He received his BFA in painting from Pacific Northwest College of Art in 1986 and his MFA from the Hoffberger School of Painting at Maryland Institute College of Art in 1992 where he studied under abstract expressionist, Grace Hartigan. Smith also studied at the Studio Art Center International and attended Il Bisonte International School of Printmaking in Florence, Italy, 83/84. His work continues to be informed by extensive travel in West Africa.

After teaching painting at PNCA for 25 years, Smith retired in 2014 with the title Faculty Emeritus and in 2018 was awarded honorary PhD of Art. He also taught at Maryland Institute College of Art, University of Oregon and Oregon College of Arts and Crafts. He has exhibited extensively both regionally and nationally. His work is in the permanent collections of the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art, Delaware Museum of Art, The David Driskell Center, University of Maryland, Lauren Rogers Museum of Art, Mississippi; Petrucci Family Foundation Collection of African American Art, Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation, Meier Memorial Trust, Oregon State University, the Hallie Ford Museum of Art, Portland Art Museum, Reginald F. Lewis Museum, Baltimore, MD., City of Portland, Multnomah County Courthouse, and Pacific Northwest College of Art, among other public and private collections including the Nelson Mandela Estate.

Also, he was the 2020 recipient of the Joan Mitchell Sculpture and Painters Award, in 2017 he was awarded the Governor's Award for the Art for lifetime achievement. In 2022, Smith's work will be exhibited in a retrospective exhibition, ScareCrow, at the Hallie Ford Museum of Art at Willamette University. He will be represented by his Baltimore based gallery in the 2022 Venice Biennale.

Images courtesy of the artist.

Arvie Smith ‘85, photo credit Dan Kvitka

Award History

Established in 2010 as the Laura Russo Distinguished Alumni Award, the Laura Russo Luminary Alumni Award celebrates Laura Russo ’75 and the contributions she made to the development of the Portland arts community, including her work with Arlene Schnitzer and the Fountain Gallery, founding the Laura Russo Gallery (now the Russo Lee Gallery), and establishing the First Thursday Group (now Portland Art Dealers Association), as well as her service to many arts organizations including PNCA. Russo was awarded the prestigious Governor’s Arts Award in 2010 and recognized posthumously in 2011 as the first recipient of the Laura Russo Distinguished Alumni Award.

Laura Russo