David Mach is one of the UK’s most successful and respected artists, known for his dynamic and imaginative large scale collage, sculpture and installations using a wide range of materials, including coat hangers, matches, magazines and many others. The Scotsman describes his work as ‘big on gesture and big in proportion, it demands your attention and gets it’.
Mach’s first solo exhibition was held at the Lisson Gallery, London in 1982. His international reputation was quickly established and he has exhibited in solo and group exhibitions around the world including London, New York, Los Angeles, Melbourne, Hong Kong, Hakone, Tel Aviv and Warsaw. Public commissions include the tumbling telephone boxes, “Out of Order” in Kingston, “Train” in Darlington; “Big Heids”, visible from the M8 between Glasgow and Edinburgh; “It Takes Two”, sited North of Paris and in Marseille, Likeness Guaranteed commissioned by McMaster Museum of Art, Hamilton, and most recently, “Giants” in Vinadio, Italy and “Phantom”, commissioned by Morrisons supermarket for the Promenade in Kirkcaldy, Fife.
Born in 1956 in Fife, David Mach attended Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art where he chose to specialise in sculpture because he thought it was the most demanding, intellectually and physically. Following a postgraduate year, Mach won a scholarship to attend Art College in Warsaw. As Martial Law had been declared in Poland, he was unable to take up his place but instead was invited to do his MA at the Royal College of Art.
Mach became a part-time lecturer in the Sculpture School, Kingston University from 1982 to 1986 and was a lecturer at the Contemporary Art Summer School, Kitakyushu, Japan from 1987 to 1991. In 1988 he was nominated for the Turner Prize and four years later won Glasgow’s Lord Provost Prize. He became a Royal Academician in 1998. In 2000 he was appointed Professor of Sculpture at the Royal Academy Schools, London.
He received an honorary Doctor of Laws from the University of Dundee in 2002. In 2003 his “Arm’s Length” sculpture of a woman made in coat hangers won The Jack Goldhill Award for sculpture at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition. In 2004 he was elected an honorary member of the Royal Scottish Academy and the same year, the University of Dundee appointed him Professor of Inspiration and Discovery. From 2006-2010 he became a Trustee of the National Portrait Gallery.
In 2011 Mach was awarded the Bank of Scotland Herald Angel Award for his exhibition “Precious Light”, a daring contemporary interpretation of the King James Bible in the form of large-scale collage and sculpture. The same year, he also won the Glenfiddich Spirit of Scotland Award for Art.
David Mach currently works from his studio based in London.