Susannah Claire Kelly

Date of Birth

April 24, 1987

Date of Death

September 2, 2023

Susannah Claire Kelly (36) passed away unexpectedly on September 2, 2023 in Portland, Oregon, due to a sudden and severe medical issue.

Susannah was born on April 24, 1987, in Santa Barbara, California to Kathy and Kevin Kelly, arriving five minutes before her identical twin, Sheila. They joined their sister, Liz, growing up in a household filled with love, laughter, and music. Susannah and Sheila shared an uncommon bond and were inseparable from the moment they were born.It was clear from the beginning that Susannah had an artist’s eye for detail, observing the minutiae of the world around her and finding beauty in it all. She drew and painted constantly and after graduating Dos Pueblos High School in 2005, she attended Willamette University, where she received her BA in Studio Art in 2009.

After graduating, Susannah moved to Portland, where she immersed herself in the art community, working with the Alberta Arts District to expand programs and developing her portfolio. She had her first solo show in 2010 at the Newport Visual Arts Center on the Oregon coast.

Shortly thereafter, Susannah met the love of her life, fellow artist Neil Perry. Together they opened Antler Gallery in 2012 in a windowfront cubicle on Alberta Street. She and Neil curated each monthly show together and their combined eye for beauty and artistic talent led to such success that they soon moved Antler Gallery to a full storefront on Alberta Street, rapidly followed by a second gallery, Talon, in 2017.

Susannah and Neil loved to travel. Their adventures took them all over the world, but they especially loved spending time together on the Oregon Coast and in the Columbia River Gorge. They adopted their first dog, Duncan, in 2014, and he became a fixture at the gallery, charming everyone he met. When Neil proposed to Susannah, he tied the ring to Duncan’s collar and sent him over to her because he said, “she couldn’t say no to Duncan”. Susannah and Neil were married on February 13, 2017, in a beautiful ceremony surrounded by their loving families and friends.

In June 2023, they realized a decade-long dream and opened Antler and Talon in their own building, celebrating this momentous event with the inaugural show on June 29.Susannah was wildly funny. Her infectious laugh made everyone around her smile, too. She was witty, loving, generous, and kind. She cared deeply about equality and social justice. She loved hunting for agates, shells, and fossils. She stopped to pet every dog she met. She loved nature, her family, and her friends.

She was so incredibly and deeply loved. The loss of her is unimaginable. She is alive in our hearts and in the beautiful art she made.

Susannah is survived by her husband, Neil Perry; her parents, Kathy and Kevin Kelly; her sisters, Sheila Kelly (Michael Haight) and Liz Kelly-Campanale (Kris Kelly-Campanale); her niece and nephew Ava and Otto Kelly-Campanale; her in-laws, Frankie and Christine Perry; her beloved hound dog Herbert; and a multitude of close friends and family.

There will be a Celebration of Life on Monday, September 18, at the Antler and Talon Galleries in Portland, Oregon at 4pm.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to and sharing the following link:


Please note this login is to submit events or press releases. Use this page here to login for your Independent subscription

Not a member? Sign up here.