Let there be light!

David Mach- Precious Light, King James Bible, A Celebration, 1611-2011  City Art Centre, Edinburgh 30 July- 16 Oct 2011 David Mach face to face with The Devil. Pic Neil Hanna
David Mach- Precious Light, King James Bible, A Celebration, 1611-2011 City Art Centre, Edinburgh 30 July- 16 Oct 2011 David Mach face to face with The Devil. Pic Neil Hanna

THE heads of Christ and Satan made out of matchsticks and the Crucifixion depicted in coat-hangers – just some of the controversial pieces from Methil-born artist David Mach’s biggest ever exhibition.

‘Precious Light’, the culmination of almost a decade’s work for the former Buckhaven High School pupil, opened at Edinburgh’s City Art Centre as part of the capital’s art festival, which runs until October 16.

Timed to coincide with the 400th anniversary of the publication of the King James Bible, it includes more than 40 collages of Biblical scenes, made out of magazine cuttings, depicting images such as a plague of locusts descending on New York, and Arthur’s Seat being used as the backdrop for Noah’s Ark.

Mach, who admits he is not religious, despite its nature, said: “I’ve been working on the exhibition solidly for the last three to four years and was trying to pull it together for another three to four years before that, but I’ve really been thinking about it for the best part of the past decade.

“It’s definitely the biggest exhibition I’ve ever done and it’s been a real slog over the last few years. Some of the collages took months to complete, which was far too long, and I got quicker as time went on.

“A lot of my work seemed to be pointing towards the Bible and religion with its dramatic, apocalyptic nature, although I am not religious.

“I didn’t study the Bible at all for the exhibition; it was really based on my own knowledge gained from the Scottish education system. Whether we like it or not, we were all taught a fair bit about the Bible in those days.”

The exhibition has, however, come under some scrutiny from Christian campaign groups, with the most controversial feature being the two matchstick heads.

Mach has set light to the Devil already, with Christ to be lit around the unveiling of a “colossal” version of the The Last Supper on September 20.