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 an organized and presumed order. This interruption makes room for movement – a liberation of sorts from the boundaries previously imposed.

This work addresses a fettered past. My aesthetic is informed by the freedom I felt – and feel in the outdoors; and the exhilaration I find revealed in nature.

Suzi Ballenger received her MFA from the University of Massachusetts-Dartmouth 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 love of thread and fiber informs her research in weaving and hand paper making and was supported by workshops at the Honolulu Museum of Art, Hawaii and an internship at Dieu Donné Paper Studio in Brooklyn, New York. She currently serves as the President of the Board of Directors for the Handweavers Guild of America, an organization of more than 3,500 members.