A String walks into a bar and asks for a drink. The bartender says, “We don’t serve Strings.”
The String leaves. It ties a knot in the top of its head, shakes all around, goes back into the bar, sits down and again asks for a drink. The bartender repeats, “We don’t serve Strings!”
“I am not a String. I’m a Frayed Knot.”
Choice and change represent the essence of freedom. They are opportunities that belie expectations and move boundaries. A tightly plied thread that, with a simple action, becomes something else, disturbs a predictable order. This interruption makes room for movement – a liberation of sorts – allowing for a remarkable response.
My work addresses a fettered past. Using poetic elements such as paper and thread, restraint is demonstrated in ways that are unexpected yet familiar. This aesthetic is informed by the freedom I felt – and feel in the outdoors; and the exhilaration I find revealed in nature.
Born and raised in Indiana, Suzi Ballenger completed her BA at Keene State College in New Hampshire and has worked in New England as a weaver and teaching artist since 1996. She has invented and trademarked specialized tools for weaving. Suzi’s current research in hand papermaking is informed by her love of thread and fiber and was supported by workshops at the Honolulu Museum of Art, Hawaii and an internship at Dieu Donné Paper Studio in Brooklyn, New York.