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Hanging by a Thread


Hanging by a Thread

approx. 24" wide by 30", (not including the thread from which it only seems to be hanging--it is actually well supported for hanging by a rod through a casing on the back); 2002.

The title reflects the slim majority support for Roe v. Wade in the U.S. Supreme Court. Machine-pieced of cotton and silk and quilted by hand, the wall hanging is shaped like the classical Greco-Roman Supreme Court building, also evoking the pillars upon which Roe is based: reproductive rights, freedom of religion, separation of religion and state, and right to privacy.

Symbols of the case and the cause can be found above and between the pillars:

  • A gingko leaf, symbolic of remembering, quilted with the date 1973, the year Roe v. Wade was decided
  • Justice's robe, judge's gavel, and scales of justice
  • A fish with a sac of eggs ("Roe"), represented by one bead for each of the nine Supreme Court judges, and other watery wordplay-references to the name Wade
  • Patterns hand-quilted in black thread: a chain (of events) in the fresco area; 5 to 4, the status of judicial stances re Roe v. Wade; "Chai," the Hebrew word for life, and the clinical symbol for women, in reference to women's lives saved by the legalization of abortion

Donated for the Blue Moon Auction held by Planned Parenthood Action Fund of Bucks County.

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