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Remarkably enough a piece of jewellery made by Ralph Bakker could be defined as springing from extremes. Remarkable, because that is not the first thing that comes to mind when looking at his sophisticated work.

Yet Bakker manages to unite the traditional values of refined craftsmanship with radical modernity. In his pieces he unites the Baroque with Minimalism. The key lies in the term 'unite'. Opposites derive their eloquence from each other; due to the contrast the one makes the other richer, sleeker, better. The contraposition creates cooperation.

In the group of new necklaces, brooches and bracelets that Ralph Bakker developed, the quality is achieved by integrating simplicity with complexity, from the opposition of order and chaos. The relatively simple connection system between the constituent segments, merges varying sizes of rectangles, or a series of circle fragments with differently coloured sides. When these pieces are worn - the specific virtue of jewellery! - the bracelets come to life in surprising ways. Notions that have defined Asiatic thinking for centuries, were convincingly translated by Bakker into jewellery pieces made from gold, silver and enamel.

Ward Schrijver
(© Galerie Rob Koudijs)

© Ralph Bakker