Petra Laaper

foto’s Jacqueline Fuijkshot




Gongshi, also spirit stones or scholar’s stone, is an object which scholars or petrophiles, otherwise called lovers of stones, meditate on. Gongshi are valued for their appearance. Their aesthetics is based on subtleties of colour, shape, markings, surface, and sound.

The very concept of Gongshi, translates into Petra’s sculptural works, alternative embodiments of the scholar’s stone, where four different aesthetic qualities are identified: upright stature, openness, perforations and folding.

Petra’s work implicitly questions our perceived individuality and independence. Her sculptures in Gongshi poses questions such as, “How are we being shaped and formed? Do we really consider ourselves on our own without connections in the world?” Petra believes our times asks a different approach; it is no longer a time for fixed and radical views. In her work, she calls for space for flexibility and mobility, open-mindedness, and seeks to look and observe, creating work that encourages a sense of introspection and the softness of dialogue.


What does the object want?

Petra Laaper zooms in with her sculptures on the sensory experience where meaning is still undecided and open to interpretation.
She shows simple shapes that are recognizable but do not have a specific function and raise a question about their intention.
Giving her works a portrayal of her ongoing observation of the body in space and the relational ability of objects.

Her work manifests as a body in space, an attribute for an action, an object to pick up, hold up and try.

Petra Laaper is a visual artist who lives and works in Rotterdam. Graduated from the WDKA in Rotterdam in Sculpture/visual arts. She makes objects, installations, photographs and stop motion films.
Petra has exhibited her work nationally and internationally and creates various assignments for semi-public space.

Playing with familiar forms as treasure its perception, the imperfect nature and the beauty that results from it are on the surface in Petra her soft textile sculptures.