Carl Hansen & Søn


Anker Bak

Anker Bak’s ambition is to create designs that make a difference in people’s lives – products that meet real needs.

Designer bio

In the span of just a few years, Anker Bak
(b. 1983) has convinced both manufacturers and consumers that there is such a thing as meaningful design. The young designer from Denmark, who has an unconventional background, takes a very personal approach to his work. With relatively few designs, Bak has put quality materials, sublime craftsmanship and ingenious functionality on the agenda.

Anker Bak's design work has already won several awards, and the unorthodox designer with his heart in the right place is particularly in demand after creating a functional design object out of something as standardized as a crutch. He conceived the form-pressed wood crutch when his 91-year-old grandmother needed a little support when going out to socialize. Later, using a similar real-life-based approach, he developed the Rocking Nest Chair when his sister needed a meditative and comfortable place to relax with her newborn baby.

The Rocking Nest Chair, whose minimalist form and folding functionality makes it stand out from other rocking chairs on the market, clearly demonstrates the designer's potential and is now an integral part of the Carl Hansen & Søn collection.

Anker Bak's fascination with natural materials and his great respect for good craftsmanship are important core values for this innovative designer.

Bak's path to the creative universe and to design has been far from straight, taking several twists and turns along the way. As a child, Bak was not happy at school, and was allowed to take carpentry lessons on the side to help keep him focused. As he explains, he proved to be good with his hands - something he became well aware of early in his childhood when visiting his grandfather in Sweden and trying his skills in the woodcarving workshop.

It came as no surprise when Bak decided to train as a cabinetmaker. He was educated at a boatyard, where he was allowed to produce specialty fittings for sailing yachts, and he successfully qualified as a cabinetmaker, winning a silver medal. After completing his apprenticeship, Bak decided to travel and to pursue his growing passion for alpine climbing.

The urge to travel went hand in hand with a desire to continue his education. Initially, he trained as a graduate in production technology, working with many different designers - including in the clothing industry, which led to a sojourn in China. However, it was wood and cabinetmaking that won him over, and he spent six months working in a carpentry workshop in Hawaii. After returning home to Denmark, Bak applied to TEKO design college (now VIA University College), earning a Bachelor's degree in furniture design.

Bak's exceptional talents have earned him several prizes and awards: he won the Danish National Championship (SkillsDenmark) in Cabinetmaking, earned recognition as a 'Danish Design Talent', and won Next Project. Bak has also received a number of grants from TheNational Bank of Denmark´s Anniversary Foundation, the Danish Trade Council's foundation, and the Danish Arts Foundation, among others.

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