Making Things Personal, a retrospective on Maarten Baas

Following Maarten Baas’ ‘Designer of the Year’ Award, the Stedelijk Museum in Hertogenbosch presents a comprehensive exhibition of Maarten Baas entitled ‘Making Things Personal’ which illustrates the beauty of imperfection and personal quality found in his work.

In 2002 designer Maarten Baas became an instant sensation in the design world with his Design Academy graduation collection ‘Smoke’. Through the charred and blackened furniture, he makes a statement about an impersonal design tradition. His designs originate from an unusual approach, resulting in an individual signature.

Baas’ independent and idiosyncratic way of working has earned him the nickname of ‘the bad boy of design’. Design for Baas is about exploring new forms through the use of unorthodox methods and materials. In his own words: “Furniture designs in general are introvert, rational and impersonal through the symmetry and fixed finishing touch. When you compare this kind of design with people I wouldn’t feel myself at home, they are so pretentious. I want to make something that doesn’t have that distant character, but something more personal, like when children are drawing or claying.”

Maarten Baas was named ’Designer of the Year’ at Art Basel /Design Miami 2009. The SM is showing a selection from all his furniture series since 2002, together with several one-off commissions. The playful designs from ‘The Chankley Bore’ series and the Haphazard Harmony Service had their Dutch premiere at the exhibition which runs until May 25th 2010.

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