Using an alter-ego (assumed name) of Bruce Sargeant, Beard's works, such as large paintings, friezes and bronze sculptures, are featured in Abercrombie & Fitch's flagship stores in New York, Los Angeles, London, Milan, Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Tokyo. The 2008 commission for the Tokyo Abercrombie & Fitch store is his largest to date – an eleven story tall mural.
Mark’s studio (above) is littered with oil paintings, life drawings, heroic bronzes, ceramics, and architectural maquettes, illustrating that he is a virtuoso in many mediums. A noted set designer, he also has paintings, prints, sculptures and handcrafted books in collections all over the world.
Curiously, Beard channeled himself into several alter egos, each with a completely fabricated bio. He says this enables him to work within several distinct styles. Bear with me. First was the persona of “Bruce Sargeant” (1898-1938), a spoof on John Singer Sargent. “Bruce Sargeant” is an imagined English artist, a contemporary of E. M. Forster, Rupert Brooke and John Sloan, who purportedly died in a tragic wrestling accident. I kid you not. Mark then created Bruce Sargeant’s teacher, “Hippolyte-Alexandre Michallon”, a 19th-century French Academist. Michallon also taught “Edith Thayer Cromwell”, an American post-modern avant-gardeist. Next up were “Brechtolt Steeruwitz”, a Viennese Expressionist of complex personality, and “Peter Coulter” (b. 1948), a NYC based artist purportedly influenced by Cromwell and Steeruwitz. So Mark Beard is more than one artist – he is at least six. Beard made a mockumentary in which he played five of his alter egos, with critics discussing each artist’s work. I’m not making this up.
Mark Beard painting as Bruce Sargeant: Two Boys Seated on a Bench (below)
Mr. Beard is represented by ClampArt in New York City, where he resides in a 3,700 sq. ft. studio in Hell's Kitchen on West 38th St. that he bought with his partner, James Manfred. Mark Beard outside his NYC studio (below):
I'm afraid I've overemphasized Mark's paintings. He has designed sculptures (above) and the 18-foot tall doors of the Edmond J. Safra Synagogue (below) on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. The bronze doors bear a tree of life design, a representation of the process by which the universe came into being.