Hailing from the Netherlands, Aldo Bakker masterfully creates works of art and furniture that make natural stone speak. Regularly exhibited at the Carpenters Workshop Gallery, each of his pieces -be they a table, a stool, or a statue- blur the borders between art, design, form, and function. His use of shape and colour moreover reflect how he artistically perceives the relationship between man and object -or, more precisely, the relationship between object and man. He positions his works as independent characters, thereby forcing his audience to shift its perception. “Sitting Table,” “Three Pair,” “Weight” and “Dining Table” each carry over the hue, texture, and design of the materials from which they are made: quartzite, red travertine, marble, green onyx, and pietra basalt. A thin rectangular slab supported by another, more sturdy slab running down middle that fans out at the bottom, Dining Table visualizes the balance between mass and strength, and adds boldness to any space. His collection contains 10 natural stone pieces, each of which symbolize weight and power in their own right. In Bakker’s own words, “When I create a form, I respect the individual nature of each element. I allow the elements when they come together to guide how the object will emerge and what shape it will take.” The artist positions his works as individual creatures that share traces of a common language, force us to time to look at them, push us to try and understand them, and dare us to engage in conversation with them. He thereby discourages us from projecting our knowledge of style and material value on to them.
An autodidact, Bakker rejected formal arts training. The introverted nature of his works, their elegant curves and facets, the depth of their surfaces, and their flawless execution all contribute to the sensation that these artefacts tell their own stories in their own language. From early on in his career, the artist’s exquisite use of shape, material, and colour explores how people and objects relate to one another. Many of Bakker’s pieces have been acquired by museums like MoMa, Boijmans Van Beuningen, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the Rijksmuseum and Centre Pompidou.