About the Artists
I was born and raised in Portland, Oregon and have always loved hiking and camping in the mountains and forests. I feel very fortunate to be able to combine my art with my love of the outdoors. I received my BA in Education from Pacific Lutheran University and taught high school in Washington State for several years before concentrating on my vocation as an artist in the early 1980’s. Although I initially taught basketry classes as well as developing my own work, in the early 1990’s, I decided to give up teaching and concentrate on my own art.
I am a founder member of the Columbia Basin Basketry Guild, a board member of Portland’s premier fine art festival, Art in the Pearl, and a former member and director of the Lake Oswego Crafts and Arts League (LOCAL 14). My baskets have received many awards and two were featured in the Lark Press book, “500 Baskets”. I live in Milwaukie, Oregon with my husband and our dogs.
I grew up in the Seattle area, and after moving to Portland when I was in my early 20’s, I took a number of classes at a local art center. After my first class in basketry I was hooked and I realized this was what I wanted to do. As I pursued my basketry, I taught a number of classes, but my real love was weaving itself, and I wanted to develop and expand the scope of my own weaving.
The main emphasis in my baskets is the use of natural materials and I spend several weeks each year gathering bark, kelp, driftwood. Whilst exploring the back roads, the mountains and the coast of the Pacific Northwest in search of new materials, I have been privileged to visit many beautiful places which have inspired my work. I live in Portland, Oregon with my husband.
Gourds by Handwoven is a professional partnership between Leslee and Chris. They have been creating and selling finely crafted hard-shelled gourds since 1999. Their work has been displayed at many art shows and galleries in the western United States and sold in national catalogs.