Take Me, I'm Yours by Laura Russell


Many years ago this artist placed a singles ad in Denver’s alternative weekly newspaper. The headline read “Work Hard, Play Hard” and now this book celebrates 25 years of happy marriage thanks to a fun advertising experiment.

In a bit of whimsy, image and text play off each other to create irreverent pairings of singles pick-up lines with intimate portraits of abandoned furniture that can be found cast aside like a bad romance on city streets everywhere. Twenty Polaroid-style photographs are paired with text highlighting the becoming features of the lonely furniture. The 80’s looker says, “Single white sofa, mature, well-endowed, seeking free love in warm, cozy, dry home.” The teal velvet slipper chair says, “Me: clean, curvy, cushy, velvety, dove-tail joints. Single and ready to mingle.” This limited-edition artist book utilizes Hedi Kyle’s flag book structure to mimic a local bulletin board that might have been used for advertising in the good old days before the internet.

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.