The following images show examples of community oriented, site specific, engaging, immersive, interdisciplinary, art that works towards achieving a sense-of-place and building a better environment for human interaction. I am the founder of the award-winning Columbia College Chicago's Papermaker's Garden, and have experience working on collaborative community, artistic events in places such as Chicago, Cordoba, Argentina, and Concepcion, Chile. As a "fine artist" I explore how one engages more fully in their landscape and community.
Nicholas Basbanes at the Papermaker's Garden
The Papermaker's Garden hosts a ceremonious planting with Founder, Alex Borgen, in Spring of 2014 with a collaboration between The Caxton Club, The Center for Book and Paper Arts, and Nicholas Basbanes, the author of On Paper: The Everything of its 2000-year History.
Among those in attendance: Clif Meador former Director of Interdisciplinary Arts, Jackie Vossler of the Caxton Club, Nicholas Basbanes, Steve Woodall and April Sheridan of the Center for Book and Paper Arts.
Sculpture is by Matthew Hoffman, You Are Beautiful.
The Papermaker's Garden 2.0
The Papermaker's Garden was remodeled in the autumn of 2013. It is about 7000 square feet, and includes a performance stage, gathering area, and deep raised beds. The renovations were revealed with an Opening Reception, art workshops, and performances for the community in September 2013.
Somos Viento Public Works
This image is from a public performance in Concepcion, Chile by Casa Re-Cre@. I was a creative consultant with Somos Vientos, as I collaborated with members of Re-Cre@s for this project. It is one example of many public performances, events, and workshops I helped develop in city's across South America, including Cordoba, Los Antiguos, and San Fransisco (Argentina), as well as, Santiago, Concepcion, Castro-Chiloe (Chile).
Star Blanket, handmade paper performance, 10 ft x 18 ft, 2012.
The Star Blanket is a project developed in response to Chicago's lack of visible stars in the sky and its connection and need for Lake Michigan. It is an interactive, movable public sculpture and performance venue, and engages the community to share stories while immersed in moment. Performances at Millenium Park 2012, Solid Ground Studio, on Wasbash Avenue 2012, and the Papermaker's Garden 2013.
Outdoor Paper Projection
Outdoor Paper Projection Test, Collaboration with Kate Morgan and Sid Branca, Outdoor Performance, Bring Your Own Beamer Event, Chicago, IL, 2012, handmade paper, 12 ft x 15 ft, and video projection, 2013.
The Bring Your Own Beamer Event was a collaboration at Columbia College Chicago in December 2013.
La Compañia De La Caracola presents El Elefante Rojito in Antofagasto, Chiloe, Chile.
Art as Social Practice
A community art event to teach people about art's potential for social change.
Art Workshops and Events
I helped organize local art events in specific neighborhoods in need of art. In addition to performances, we taught art workshops.
I organized and performed at a collaborative, immersive installation for painting and performance at Somos Viento.
Contemplative Loop: Stories of Papermaking and Athletics
Trained in the art and history of handmade paper, natural and recycled fibers, Borgen has pushed the boundaries of the traditional paper craft practices into immersive, experimental, and interactive installation work.