Nico Bakker
Nico was born in Rotterdam as the youngest son in a family of three children. In Amsterdam he followed the ‘tweedegraads’ study in drawing and painting at the VLVU, followed by the ‘eerstegraads’ study in drawing and painting in Amersfoort (the then Academie voor Beeldende Vorming, now HKU Utrecht). He worked for a while as a teacher in artistic development, after which he focussed completely on his own painting. Nico had studios in Veenendaal, then Utrecht, and in the last thirty years of his life, till 2012, in Osdorp, Amsterdam.

Nico Bakker Art Project
Nico Bakker has left an oeuvre of paintings that was rarely exhibited during his lifetime. To us the challenge of finding suitable ways to exhibit his work. We hope that the paintings pass on to new owners who will enjoy them and protect them for the future. With this in mind the Nico Bakker Art Project has been set up by a group of Nico’s friends and family.

As time goes by
Currently (January 2023) Nico Bakker’s work was to be seen in a sale exhibition ‘As time goes by’ at the Mövenpick Hotel Amsterdam City Centre.

Nico Bakker – the man
Nico Bakker (1957 – 2012) was a free spirit with a lot of energy, who was interested in everything he came across. At night he was to be found in his studio in Osdorp. During the day he was often in his much-loved top floor apartment on the Lindengracht. As well as art Nico loved swimming, skating, sailing and cycling, all of which he carried out with the same enthusiasm as his art.

Nico Bakker – the painter
The painting was ready in Nico’s head before he begun to paint. He made lots of studies, made on scraps of paper, sometimes not bigger than an envelope, sometimes on larger sheets which he hung up in his flat, to contemplate the physical relationships of his subject.

Nicos nietjes

His works are large, the biggest is 4 x 2 meter. He was enormously interested in technique, and the right and wrong ways to do things. Even making the frame and stretching the canvas was done with immense care and mastery, as befits the beginnings of a slow process with perfectionism as its aim.

On the stretched canvas, he was, impressively, able to reproduce the sketches he had made before, without painting any smaller studies. Painting in oils, he painstakingly gave his work shape in the form of detailed areas of colour, built up in many layers.

Working nights, he devoted himself tirelessly, as a monk, to one painting for months on end: framing, looking, painting, improving, removing and starting again. He was a perfectionist and critical. Towards others, but mostly to himself.

Nico Bakker – the traveller
Nico loved to travel. At home he travelled via stories and books, to plan new trips and relive the old ones. On his dining table there was always a pile of library books, of destinations far away, books about artists and newspaper cuttings of exhibitions.  He was a competent sea sailor, and would often be invited by boats needing extra competent hands. Over the sea, to the Azoren and further. To America! The America that is long discovered, but where something new is to always be found: to New York, discovering Stilled Landscapes.

Nico Bakker – the friend
Nico had a wide network of friends who knew each other only through his stories. Nico was a romantic and loved the spontaneous and unexpected. He was interested in art and in technique, and how things work. He enjoyed people, was good company with an unusual view of the world. He was a loyal friend. There are many of us who miss him still.

Get in touch
Do you have interest in this work, or know of a suitable gallery for these paintings? Would you like to look at the paintings outside the exhibition? For all such questions, others, just email us at: info@nicobakker.org

All paintings are photographed by Marcel van Nieuwenhuijsen, artprints are for sale.
Portrait of Nico Bakker and Website: Linda Jenkin.
Communications and locations: Marja Bouman.