Terry Border (1965) received his B.S in Fine Art Photography at Ball State University and became a commercial photographer. He is also a creator of children’s books and unique wire sculptures. In 2006 he began a “Bent Objects” series, which focused on adding wire to everyday objects (or junk) to “help pose them as living characters, usually telling a story, and then photographing them…” (terryborder.com). Like several other artists that I have introduced, Border gives new purposes to discarded objects.
I enjoy the way Border mixes bent wires (that act as limbs) with humour, as well as the way he tells a story with each creation. His inspiration for creating the Bent Object series came from “sending little tokens of gratitude to distributors of his upcoming children’s book” (mymodernmet.com).
My favourite series created by Border is titled “Wiry Limbs, Paper Backs.” This collection is meant to give life to old books, by transforming them into sculptures that represent its own story. I am intrigued with what Border has to say about his book creations: “[a] local used bookstore has a rack of old, mostly classic paperbacks that they sell for $2, and the covers are so great, and the used ones have so much personality, they begged to be made into something. There are always some people who find doing anything to a book besides reading it morally wrong (ha!), but the way I see it, I’m showcasing these books and their covers like they never would have been otherwise. I have zero guilt about any of that nonsense.” If I am offered a job as a visual art teacher I would introduce my students to Terry Border and the reason as to why he transforms old books into art. He showcases books in new perspectives and makes us look at them differently. This would be a great visual art activity- to have students find an old book, read it and personify it in some way by transforming it into a work of art. Through creating found object art, students will be encouraged to look for inspiration in the world around them. They are also given the opportunity to explore new mediums and learn that they can “create an artwork out of nothing…[have] the creative ability and talent to put life into dull objects…” (graphicdesignblog.org).
More about Border:
-He has two books published by Running Press that show his Bent Objects collections.
-He is currently in the process of creating a children’s book for Philomel – “a footprint of Penguin Publishing” (terryborder.com).
-He has a contract with Universal Publishing to create calendars and greeting cards with his Bent Objects.
-His Bent Objects have been “featured in magazines in the U.S., China, France, Russia, Germany, and Italy, and was the number one “culture” link of the year for the London Telegraph website…” (terryborder.com).
Further reading: “Bent Objects by Ralph Jones” (https://docs.google.com/file/d/0Bz5poh9f64JuaGl4X3BEeDlKVFU/preview?pli=1)