David Mach born 1956

Artist biography

Scottish sculptor. In his earliest works at the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Dundee (1974–9), he made use of discarded objects found in local scrap-yards, which he combined in sculpture that explored the resonance of their industrial use. He moved on to make monumental assemblages from such materials as vast stocks of magazines and directories, that were turned into, for example, life-size cars, tanks and submarines (e.g. Silent Running, 1982; Rotterdam, Gal. 't Venster) reflecting aspects of an aggressive and consumer-driven culture. Mach aimed to demythologise the practice of art and did not hesitate to incorporate mass-produced elements, ranging from childrens' toys to kitsch accessories, in often satirical constructions. If You Go Down to the Woods (1987; see 1987 exh. cat.), for example, consists of dozens and dozens of mass-produced dolls and teddy bears supporting huge wooden logs. He also rejected the traditional function of sculpture as an avenue for the contemplation of abstract ideas, preferring in his temporal installations, such as the statues of 101 Dalmatians exhibited in the grounds of the Tate Gallery, London, to make a point of contact with the urgent concerns of the modern world.

David Mach: Towards a Landscape (exh. cat. by M. Livingstone, Oxford, MOMA, 1985)
David Mach: Si avui t'endinses en els boscos (exh. cat., Barcelona, Fund. Miró, 1987)
David Mach: 101 Dalmatians (exh. cat., London, Tate, 1988)
M. Livingstone, ed.: David Mach (Kyoto, 1990) [Eng./Jap. text]

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