Born in Hampshire 1964, Charming Baker spent much of his early life travelling around the world following his father, a Commando in the British Army. At the age of 12, he and his family finally settled in Ripon, North Yorkshire. Baker left school at 16 and worked various manual jobs and in 1985, having gone back to college, he was accepted onto a course at the prestigious Central Saint Martin’s, where he later returned as a lecturer. After graduating, Baker worked for many years as a commercial artist as well as developing his personal work.
Although Baker has produced sculptural pieces in a wide and varied choice of materials as well as many large-scale and detailed drawings, he remains primarily a painter with an interest in narrative and an understanding of the tradition of painting. Known to purposefully damage his work by drilling, cutting and even shooting it, Baker intentionally puts in to question the preciousness of art and the definition of its beauty, adding to the emotive charge of the work he produces. Indeed Edward Lucie-Smith has described Baker’s paintings as having, “something more, a kind of romantic melancholy that is very British. And sometimes the melancholy turns out to have sharp claws. The pictures make you sit up and examine your conscience.”