Catherine Coulson, Woman Who Played ‘Twin Peaks' Log Lady, Dies

Catherine E. Coulson, an actress best known as the quirky Log Lady in the TV series "Twin Peaks," has died.

Amy Richard with the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, where Coulson appeared in 50 plays over the course of 22 seasons, said Coulson died Monday at her home in Ashland, Oregon. Coulson was 71 and had been battling cancer.

Richard said Coulson met "Twin Peaks" director David Lynch in the early 1970s at an acting workshop at the American Film Institute in Los Angeles, and he cast her as a nurse in his movie "Eraserhead." She also served as assistant director, still photographer and special effects technician on the film.

In 1990 Lynch cast her as Margaret in "Twin Peaks," a mysterious woman who carries around a log.

Coulson grew up in California, where her mother was a ballet dancer and her father was a radio and television producer who also worked in public relations. She earned a bachelor of arts in theater form Scripps College and a master of fine arts from San Francisco State University.

Festival artistic director Bill Rauch recalled Coulson was in the first play he directed at the festival, and her acceptance of him helped him fall in love with the company.

"Her generosity of spirit was only matched by her vibrancy as an actor," Rausch said in a statement.

This season, Coulson had appeared as General Matilda B. Cartwright in "Guys and Dolls."

Other film and TV credits include "Portlandia," "Psych," "Calvin Marshall," "The Secret Life of Houses," and "Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me."

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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