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Press Release

Release Date: August 29, 2018

by Chickasaw Nation Media Relations Office



  • Leandra Spangler has been crafting natural papers with plants for over 30 years.

  • An assortment of locally-sourced natural paper which students in the Aug. 31 class at the ARTesian Gallery & Studios will themselves create.

  • Some of the fruits of Leandra Spangler’s papermaking process is labeled and displayed. Her Aug. 31 class in Sulphur will feature, among others, the composite Iris leaf paper.

SULPHUR, Okla. -- Leandra Spangler will teach a public class on how to craft paper using plants and natural means, 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, Aug. 31, at the ARTesian Gallery & Studios, 100 W. Muskogee St.

Students will learn to identify potential plants for papermaking then use iris leaves, daylily leaves and yucca fibers to create sheets of handmade paper. This will involve cutting, cooking, rinsing then breaking up the plants into a pulp.

Spangler’s passion for papermaking began in 1986 when she first plunged her hands in a vat of pulp. She is a former art teacher who turned full-time artist, focusing on the world of fiber. This includes sculptural forms, handmade paper, surface design, book binding and jewelry.

Her teaching experience is linked to time spent as an adjunct faculty member at Central Methodist University in Fayette, Missouri, and a full-time faculty member at Columbia Public Schools in Columbia, Missouri.

In 1993, Spangler began Bear Creek Paperworks which was named for the creek which runs near her home.

“I am intrigued by the way light falls on a surface creating highlights and subtle variations of shadow,” Spangler said. “To create interesting variations on the paper surface, I press found objects into newly formed sheets of handmade paper.”

Although she enjoys many fiber arts, she considers herself primarily a papermaker especially interested in the ability of a wet sheet of newly formed paper to take and hold the textures of found objects.

Any interesting texture is fair game for Spangler. She said, if you look closely, you can find impressions of lace, bubble wrap, plastic netting or buttons in handmade paper.

Her works have been part of exhibitions across the United States, including art centers in Missouri, Illinois, New Mexico, Ohio, Texas, Washington, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, New York, Kansas and Oregon.

Likewise, in over 20 years she has instructed workshops across the states.

Her Aug. 31 class at the ARTesian Gallery and Studios costs $100, which includes instruction and materials.

For more information, call the ARTesian Gallery & Studios at -580-622-8040.

Last Updated: 09/16/2016