A world-famous sculptor from Methil is enlisting the public’s help for his next major show...by asking for empty HP sauce bottles.
David Mach, who is known for his large sculptures made from tyres, coat hangers, matchsticks and magazines as well as the ‘Big Heids’ on the M8, needs 2000 glass bottles for a new exhibition to be launched in November at London’s Saatchi Gallery.
Mach, who believes the humble HP Sauce bottle is a potent symbol of Britishness, only has one bottle, and has asked on his Facebook page for help from fans.
The new work would be based on a previous work, Thinking of England, which was made in 1983 from sauce bottles arraanged in a grid and filled with dyed ink to form the image of a naked woman.
Speaking last week, Mach (58) said “It is a new version of Thinking of England for a forthcoming Pop Art show, it will be like that work, but not exactly the same.
“I have got one bottle, so I need a few more - it’s one of the nice parts of social media that people can take part like this.”
Unsurprisingly, given he has lived in London for 35 years, Mach does not support Scottish independence.
He revealed “I love being Scottish and British and being part of the union.”
“I have always thought that being Scottish is such a lucky thing, you are part of this beloved nation of Scotland, you can go anywhere in the world and be liked.
“But I love the whole island, it is such a fantastic place.
“I think many Scots don’t really give a toss about independence, I think what they resent is being ruled by these toffs in Westminster.”
Mach has created several works with bottles before, including a “Scottish version” of Thinking of England called Dying For It, made in 1989 from half litre whisky bottles, which was exhibited at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh.
This also showed a female figure, this time visible in the grid of bottles as a white shape against a blue background, suggesting the white cross of the Scottish flag.
Other bottle works made by Mach include works made with Newcastle Brown Ale bottles and French wine bottles.
Meanwhile, David Mach’s plans for a memorial sculpture in Leven to mark the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Arnhem are forging ahead.
The sculpture, which will cost £50,000 and is due to be unveiled in Festival Gardens in September, will feature a tribute to the 1st Independent Polish Parachute Brigade, which trained at Largo House, and fought in the Battle of Arnhem under General Stanisław Sosabowski.
The sculpture will be formed from a central large stone and feature symbols including the Rampant Lion and the Polish Eagle, created using tacks.
Plans are to unveil the memorial in Leven’s Festival Gardens during a memorial weekend of events scheduled to take place in September.
to coincide as well as an inscription Leven Community Council’s plans for a memorial weekend to mark the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Arnhem are beginning to take shape, with less than six months until the event.
The council is in the process of firming up plans for the three-day event in September, which looks set to include a Polish market, educational workshops, WW2 vehicles and the unveiling of a David Mach sculpture in tribute to those who fought in the battle.
And next Wednesday, the council will present its plans to elected members at the Levenmouth area committee, with a view to securing £75,000 of funding to pay for the Mach artwork and the event itself.
As well as a request for 50 per cent of funding from the Leven Common Good Fund, councillors will also hear a report requesting the remainder of the £75,000 be funded from the area budget.
Speaking at the community council meeting held last week, Dave Paterson, area services manager, said he had recommended that councillors approve both reports, and assured community council members that both reports were “favourable” to the council.
If the applications are approved, work on the memorial sculpture can start almost immediately, and community council chairman Alistair Suttie said David Mach was keen to get started.
“I’ve had emails from David asking when the money will be available so I think he is keen to make a start on the sculpture.”
The Mach masterpiece, which will sit in the Fesitval Gardens, will feature a tribute to the 1st Independent Polish Parachute Brigade, which trained at Largo House, and fought in the Battle of Arnhem under General Stanisław Sosabowski.
Leven Community Council will host it’s AGM on May 8. Anyone interested in taking part is welcome to come along.
The original work, Thinking of England, consisted of 1800 HP Sauce Bottles. He added: “To me HP Sauce is not an English thing, it’s a British thing.”
Mach once told the Tate that the original work was a comment on nationalism and British attitudes to sexuality.
He said: “I think the nationalistic thing is so close to the sexist thing anyway and the ideas of support structures, and who actually runs the country and who makes it tick ... you think of the title ‘Thinking of England’, aren’t you proud to represent Britain?
“Well, while I am happy to be involved in these things, I don’t actually think of myself as ‘the British representative’ or ‘the Scottish representative’.”