Like an architect, Christoph Jakob builds his towers made of stone elements and lends each “building” an individual aura: he accentuates polished edges and shapes, delivers insights and views through, gives structure to the “façade”. Since 2001, the artist, who comes from the Frankfurt area, has numerous exhibitions all over Germany. He is also represented in “art in construction” and creates sculptures with water.
Contrasts in Stone
In Christoph Jakob’s abstract sculptures, the “how” seems to be in the foreground, the technique of how the stone was sculpted, how did the artist do his working steps? The topic of surface and core developed early in his work. This theme is elaborated in the sculptures, leaving the surface of the stone natural, as found in the quarry and then penetrating into the interior, to the core of the stone.
He has developed a method in which he splits the found stone – he does not cut, because that would create a gap at the interface – and then he works on the fragments. On one hand, he removes material in order to form a new shape and on the other hand, he builds up the work out of these pieces, which is a similar technique as in plastic art. Into the split stone, he works serially arranged bridges, round holes, rectangular open spaces. After many hours and work steps of grinding, these areas become very smooth, creating high-glossy views of the stone. Then the stone is put together again.
His material is very hard stones: granite, a magmatic rock, and basalt, a volcanic rock. “Working on the stone is often a tightrope walk, a constant balancing. Hard rock is like glass, it just splinters away if you handle it the wrong way. I love the surface that tells stories and the cool core that you can peel out. “
The final shape is present as an idea even before the intervention, because the stone holds the form in itself. The organic form of the stone meets man-made structure and order. Christoph Jakob sees the stone in its original form and its artistic intervention as equal, at eye level. He does not force his creative ideas onto the stone, but lets them grow in sensitive correspondence with the natural conditions of the material. “It is the conflict between my will and the rock,” Christoph Jakob says. His works combine a field of tension while appearing harmonious, at the same time they exude calm and strength.