Born in 1968 in Volkel, the Netherlands, Manders currently lives and works in Ronse, Belgium. For more than two decades, Mark Manders has developed an endless self-portrait in the form of sculpture, still life, and architectural plans. Described by the artist as his ongoing “self-portrait as a building,” Manders’ works present mysterious and evocative tableaux that allow viewers to construct their own narrative conclusions and meanings. Initially inspired by an interest in writing and literature, Manders’ first conception of the self-portrait was more literal, employing language and the written word to describe his own narrative in an autobiography. Moving beyond the limits of language, he later began to explore the architecture of storytelling, focusing on structure, rather than on specific content. This early realization resulted in his first sculptural investigations of form, meaning and narrative, which over the years have developed into a remarkable and continually expanding body of work.
Founded in 1994, Tanya Bonakdar Gallery opened at 130 Prince Street in New York City’s Soho neighborhood, where it remained until relocating to 521 West 21st Street in Chelsea in 1998. Following a major renovation in the spring of 2006, the gallery doubled in size by acquiring 5,000 square feet along the ground-floor of its existing location, expanding its exhibition capabilities as well as its programming. Since its early years, the gallery has launched and fostered the careers of a key group of international artists that include Martin Boyce, Sandra Cinto, Mat Collishaw, Olafur Eliasson, Teresa Hubbard/Alexander Birchler, Carla Klein, Ernesto Neto, Rivane Neuenschwander, Susan Philipsz, Analia Saban, Tomas Saraceno, and Thomas Scheibitz, providing all of them with their first solo exhibitions in New York and, for many, their respective debuts in the United States. With a growing roster that now includes figures like Phil Collins, Mark Dion, Meschac Gaba, Mark Manders, Haim Steinbach, Sarah Sze, and Gillian Wearing, the gallery continues to support the careers and work of its artists in dialogue with audiences and institutions around the world.