Sculptured art: the incredible work of David Mach

The Scottish sculptor makes his stunning creations from matchsticks, coat hangers and playing cards.

Peter Iantorno February 4, 2015

A matchstick, a coat hanger, a deck of playing cards: when looking at these objects, any normal person would see them for exactly what they are, common household items, but David Mach is not any normal person - in fact, we reckon he's something of an artistic genius.

The Scottish artist uses all of those objects to create utterly mind-blowing artwork that you'd simply never believe could be born out of such simple materials.

Taking great pleasure in offending what he calls the "snobbish" art scene by using materials that most conventional artists would turn their noses up at, Mach has a long history of creating slightly off-the-wall works that often stir up controversy.

Polaris David Mach One famous example was his 1983 work Polaris (above), a life-sized replica of a nuclear submarine made out of some 6,000 car tyres, which he installed outside the South Bank Centre in London. The audacious installation was meant as a protest against the nuclear arms race, and it hit the headlines when a member of the public who took exception to the piece tried to burn it down, only to get caught in the flames himself and suffer fatal burns.

Although Mach certainly doesn't shy away from controversy (he once made a matchstick head of the devil then set it alight, and he also produced a sculpture of a man being crucified out of coat hangers), nowadays the quality of Mach's work takes far more headlines than anything contentious. Here are a few of our favourite examples of his coat-hanger sculptures, match-stick heads and playing card collages: David Mach coat hangers. David Mach coat hangers. David Mach coat hangers. David Mach coat hangers.David Mach coat hangers. David Mach coat hangers. David Mach matchstick head. David Mach matchstick head. David Mach matchstick head. David Mach matchstick head. David Mach playing card collage. David Mach playing card collage. David Mach playing card collage. Details: For more from David Mach, visit davidmach.com