I was instantly captivated by the works of Fritz Baumann, his minimalistic furniture is both artistic and sculptural, as well as functional. These fantastic stools and benches remind me of the origins of seating, almost as if they’ve spawned from nature and have worked themselves out of the ground. Realistically to create objects like these seen here requires a lot of work, and thanks to Fritz we can showcase some of his efforts from behind the scenes at his workshop in Munich, Germany.
As a trained carpenter Baumann’s goal is to express nature through his work. First he inspects the green tree trunk to see what the optimal form might be, he then extracts this vision with a chainsaw. The rough form is transferred to this workshop for a long drying process, where the wood looses any tension and warps to find it’s very own form. After colour treatment, such as using rust water for black and hydrogen peroxide to bleach, he finishes the seat using small hand tools and joins any large splits with dovetail joints. Leaving the wood to work in this way means the stool becomes a living thing, moving on it’s own accord.
One of the defining features of his stools are the dovetail joints that I talked about above, they stitch the wood and give it a sturdy appearance. I also think it’s an interesting conversation between a manipulated element in the wood and something that’s completely natural. You have to admire the work of Fritz as each piece is unique and he emphasises and welcomes the irregularities of the material at hand, working with them instead of against them which leads to some really expressive final forms. I hope you like them too and will head on over to his website to see more.