Mark Manders was born in 1968 in Volkel, the Netherlands. He now lives and works in Ronse, Belgium. Manders’ works in sculpture and installation are often described as surreal, haunting, and enigmatic.
A highly conceptual artist, Manders has been developing his Self-portrait as a Building since 1986. The work—a fictional building plan filled with objects representing a fictional artist named “Mark Manders,” who is similar to but distinct from the actual Manders—is constantly shifting, with new elements regularly conceived and added while others are removed. Manders started Self-portrait as a Building as a literary undertaking and transitioned to making it a sculpture, to be free of the constraints of chronology inherent to language.
For his monumental sculptures, Manders employs an intensive process that begins with research and drawings; he then uses an ancient lost-wax technique to cast the works in bronze before they undergo seven stages of painting, after which they appear like clay.