Mark Lijftogt was born in Amsterdam but at the age of six moved with his family to a small village just outside the city. After graduating from high school he found himself employment as a dental technician. However, at the age of 19 he decided to move back to Amsterdam and pursue his creative path.
He was introduced to a well known sculptor; Hans â Mannetje, he became employed at the studio and therefore worked alongside skilled artisans specializing in various crafts such as woodcarving, sculpture, decoration and restoration. It was from these artisans that he first discovered his love of time honoured techniques and classical painting.
It was not long until he transformed his home into a studio and paid daily visits to the Rijksmuseum in order to study the Old Masters. The great art from the golden centuries of Dutch Painting inspired him to start using oils. Whilst at the museum he met Chief Restorers that helped him master the technicalities of panel, canvas preparation and surface treatment, without would not have been possible to achieve the exquisite smoothness and meticulous detail characteristic of his present work. Classical painting thus started to form the point of departure for what over time would develop into his beautifully elaborated canvases and panels.
Mark has not lived in Amsterdam for a number of years, he much prefers to be far removed from the urban hustle and bustle and therefore lives in Overijissel a province in the eastern Netherlands. It is here that he creates his brilliant masterpieces in his home studio.