A New Domestic Landscape
The works of Maarten Baas continually challenge conventions of design while simultaneously paying tribute to its rich history and its makers. His highly conceptual approach to design - from his use of materials and process to the function of his objects - invites the user to reconsider their environment and envision a new domestic landscape.
Baas turns another maker’s trash into a viable product with Treasure Furniture, an edition of fifty-eight dining chairs and twenty-three armchairs made of identical pieces of scrap MDF tossed out by a furniture manufacturer. With Plastic Chair in Wood, Baas challenged woodcarvers in Shanghai to use traditional Chinese techniques to create Western forms; thus, transforming the common plastic chair into an icon of beauty. For Clay Furniture, Baas works with materials not commonly associated with everyday furnishings. Chairs and tables are handmade in brightly, colored clay over a metal frame; No two Clay works are exactly the same. With a brilliant marriage of technology and wit, Baas tells time visually in his highly acclaimed Real Time, a series of clocks that debuted at the Milan Salone di Mobile in 2009.
Resourcefulness and intellect pairs exceptionally well with Baas' creative and playful aesthetic. His designs exhibit rebelliousness yet they remain entirely reverent. His appreciation for the history of design is most evident in his 2004 series, Where There's Smoke comprised of twenty-five design icons of the 20th century each carefully burnt to a charred but identifiable and structurally sound relic of its former self. A truly avant-garde thinker, Maarten Baas boldly nods to the designers that came before him as he bestows new meanings on the objects he creates.