Dean Russo began painting more than two decades ago while he was still working at his family's woodworking shop in Brooklyn, NY. Being a third generation woodworker, using machinery and working with hardware had sharpened his eye for detail.
He then went on to attend classes at Pratt, studying graphic design. He would later attend The School Of Visual Arts to study painting as well as figure drawing.
As if this wasn't enough he was also an active member of the Irish rock group, The Canny Brothers Band, playing drums for over twenty years, touring, recording, and composing music with them. As difficult as change can be, he had decided to put more energy into his artwork, and departed from the band.
Even though there was a shift to focus on painting, music is and will always be at the core of Dean, and of course inspiring the Iconic portraits, instruments, and rock style posters he creates.
Dean credits meeting promoter Bill Graham, Halloween of 1987 at The LuntFontaine Theater in NYC as having a profound effect on him. He then saw a marriage between art and music inspired by Bill Graham's ability to create a sensory experience like no other, in which he would use lights, music, and fine art making a show into an event.
This experience has opened Dean's mind to what music and art can be together. During most open studio events and gallery shows, Dean is known to bring out the hand drums for an impromptu jam session with the guests.
Although, in the past Dean has had success with creating work that was commercially licensed for use on products, more recently he has been focused on a collection he had started in 2015. This body of work comprising of all original pieces, most have not been seen, and will not be licensed for products. This work is personal to Dean, with varying subjects and mediums, some have taken weeks to complete and will be shown throughout the next few years.
Dean has also completed thousands of personal portrait commissions, that he was humbled to do, especially knowing how close to the heart these subjects were to the people requesting them.
Most recently Dean has begun the Indelible Dog project, and is always grateful that along with his fans he is able to help animal rescues around the world, save lives.