Hit the Road Two! by Laura Russell

Hit the Road Two! is volume two, Oregon, in a series featuring each of the three states that carry Highway 99, the former main corridor that runs all the way through Canada to Mexico. The artist traveled the entire length of Highway 99 through Oregon to photograph and catalog the state's roadside attractions. Oregon was a difficult state to document. Most of Highway 99 was obliterated by I-5 in the mid-1960s leaving behind a twisted, broken road and few vestiges of our automobile and highway culture.

Artist Bio

Laura Russell is a photographer and book artist who creates hand-bound, limited-edition artist books that incorporate photographs of our urban landscape and tell a story about our culture and our communities. She has participated in national and international book arts and fine art exhibitions. Her books are collected by individual collectors and are in major collections at museums, libraries, universities and corporations. Laura is also the founder of 23 Sandy Gallery, a fine art gallery in Portland, 2007-2020, which is now owned and operated by Erin Mickelson.

Artist Statement

My goal as an artist is to open our minds to the visual and graphic landscape we look at every day but never really see. If we pay attention, we find that our urban landscape has a story to tell about our culture and our communities. For many years I have photographed vintage neon signs, brick wall ghost signs, graffiti and other examples of language and graphics in our environment. Recently, I have since expanded my photography to our urban social landscape. I use these photographs to create limited edition, hand-bound artist books that are at once a celebration of the vernacular and my own small effort to preserve our social, cultural and commercial landscape.