By Tabitha Goodling
For The Daily Item
SELINSGROVE — She said she would never go back to that town.
Now she is the reason others are flocking to the Post and Lintel in Selinsgrove.
Loryn Spangler- Jones is director of Annex 24, an art gallery in Lancaster, and she is the featured artist in the show “Exposed” going on now through Aug. 16 at the gallery on 34 S. Market St.
Spangler- Jones is a mixed media artist who describes her work of mainly acrylic pieces as “figurative, abstract, female and always autobiographical.”
“(Art) is my own way of trying to bring out the imperfections inside but still show the beauty…”
Spangler- Jones knows a little bit about imperfections and what it can do to someone.
A 1993 graduate of Selinsgrove High School, the Snyder County girl left her hometown at age 18.
“I swore I’d never go back to that town,” she said.
Life threw some curve balls, and her responses were not always positive.
“I was in a really bad place in my head…Drugs and alcohol were not cutting it. So I picked up a paint brush.”
It was 1997, and that outlet changed her life forever.
“It became my self-expression,” she said, and Spangler-Jones became what describes as a “closet artist” for 15 years, keeping her work to herself.
She then began showing friends her pieces and gained some sense of applause for what she felt was mere emotional efforts.
Spangler- Jones, who now resides in Lancaster, quit her day job in the medical field. She began to sell her work.
One friend suggested she enter an international art contest through North Light Publishers out of New York City. To her surprise, the Selinsgrove native was one of 100 artists published in the book, “The Pulse of Mixed Media,” which was published in March, 2012.
She is being published again by the same company in a book set to be released in September.
Spangler-Jones came across a fellow Selinsgrove High School graduate, Stacey Martin, operator of the Post and Lintel, on Facebook. The two began chatting about art and life, and Spangler Jones visited the gallery. Six months ago Martin asked her to consider being featured in a show.
“Loryn has such an energy about her. She is a mover and shaker in the art scene,” Martin commented.
“I love her energy and commitment to the arts. It seemed like a perfect time to have her reunite with her hometown and let Selinsgrove see what Loryn has been up to all this time.”
Spangler- Jones said her personal favorite piece on display at Post and Lintel is “Bleeding Heart.”
“It really brings to light the hurt of being trapped in the human body.”
A reception was held recently where the artist was able to connect with art lovers both local and from out of town.
“It was good to see the local people. It was also great to see the people who travelled from Baltimore and Philadelphia. I have a strong following of collectors who are willing to travel. It’s a validating feeling.”
Martin said having Spangler Jones come back home was good for the artist, too.
“I was also intrigued by the fear she had about coming back. I wanted to help her move past that. Everything seemed to line up perfectly for Selinsgrove to become part of her life again instead of a dreadful past.”
To see some of Spangler Jones’ art, go to www.lsjmixedmedia.com