Laura Russo ’75, Gallery Owner and PNCA Alumna, Dies at 66

February 11, 2010

We are saddened by the loss of a respected member of our art community, a friend to PNCA, and distinguished alumna, Laura Russo ’75.

Below is the official press release, as announced today by Laura Russo’s family and the Laura Russo Gallery.

“PORTLAND, OR, FERUARY 12, 2010: Laura Russo died last night, February 11, 2010, at the age of 66, after a valiant battle with cancer.  Before she died, there were many people to whom she wished she had more time to say goodbye, but her death came more suddenly than expected. She wanted everyone to know that the Laura Russo Gallery will remain open under the able direction of her trusted and longtime manager, Martha Lee, who is dedicated to carrying on the legacy that Laura has left behind.  She wished to express to all the artists her great admiration for who they are and the work they do, and the hope that they will remain dedicated to the gallery.  She wanted all the gallery’s customers to know that they are wonderful and should continue coming to the Gallery to appreciate and support the artists.  And she wanted her staff to know how very special they are and that their hard and excellent work made the Gallery possible.  She was entirely confident that after her death The Laura Russo Gallery will continue to operate as it has for the past 23 years, providing support to local and regional artists and a nexus between the public and those artists.

Laura will be missed by many, and her family wishes to express deep gratitude for the great outpouring of love and support that came to Laura in the past several months.  Just before her death, Laura received a special Governor’s Arts Award, an Award for Service from the Portland Art Dealer’s Association, and the Laura Russo Distinguished Alumni Award was established in her name by the Pacific Northwest College of Art.  She was honored to receive these awards and wished to thank all those responsible for making them possible.

Laura was born in Waterbury, Connecticut on March 7, 1943.  She is survived by her daughter, Maia Lawrence, her son, Dylan Lawrence and her longtime companion, Michihiro Kosuge. Further biographical details may be obtained by contacting the Laura Russo Gallery at 503-226- 2754 or at  The public may contact the gallery for further details on a memorial service in the near future.  Donations in Laura Russo’s memory can be made to The Pacific Northwest College of Art or the Portland Art Museum.”