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About

About Mark

Born in Coventry in June 1961, Mark started his life as a drummer. His first concert was at 13 and he started touring at the age of 15.

Mark spent the next 35 years as a musician and songwriter for BMG, writing and playing for some of the top names in music including The New Seekers, Mud and the Weather Girls.

Whilst living and working in Berlin from 1993 – 2004, he worked as a radio producer, sound designer and score music writer before penning his first book and screenplay, Marcello’s Date in 2002. 

The book and subsequent award-winning film enabled Mark to move to Cornwall with his wife in 2004 where he continued writing. In 2009 Mark created a multi award-winning environmental scheme before taking over a small village fine art gallery in 2012.

Nurturing the business, he increased the gallery’s turnover by 500% in just 4 years and now writes for national and local magazines about art and has launched two further art sales websites.

Mark lives with his celebrated floral designer wife on Cornwall’s Roseland Peninsula and continues to write books and screenplays whilst enjoying life as a successful gallerist.

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Art

The Harbour Gallery

In April 2012, Mark bought The Harbour Gallery in Portscatho. Within 4 years Mark had increased the gallery’s turnover by 500%, focussing especially on social media and website marketing, and in 2017 THG won ‘Best Cornish Gallery’ in a reader poll.

The Harbour Gallery represents some of the best British artists working in the country today, including many Royal Institute and regional Institute members. Mark has worked closely with many partners over the years including hotels like Tresanton, Scarlet, Driftwood and Bedruthan and regularly holds exciting exhibitions both in-house and externally.

In 2018 Mark started writing about art for national and regional magazines including the UK’s biggest art publication The Artist, cumulating in him releasing his first self-help book The Artist’s Handbook, helping artists and galleries traverse the difficult world of digital marketing.

Mark constantly looks for new ways to work with partners to increase both the gallery’s turnover and the promotion of art in general. He has also launched two innovative website for the sale of art, a curated online gallery, BritishContemporary.art and the world’s first dedicated online platform for the resale of new and pre-owned art, ArtRehome.com.

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Art

BritishContemporary.art

Having worked with some of the best British artists in The Harbour Gallery, Mark wanted to expand the selection he could offer of their work, plus work with other artists that so inspired him outside of the locational confines of his physical Cornish gallery.

As such, in January 2018, Mark launched an exciting online-only gallery, BritishContemporary.art, featuring some of the UK brightest talents in a curated online webspace.

In its first year it had achieved tens of thousands in sales and accumulate over 15000 followers on its various social media accounts. Mark has already started to put together the mechanisms to launch similar platforms in the US, Canada and Europe.

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Art

ArtRehome

 

After having customers ask how they can sell on works they’ve inherited or fallen out of love with, in 2015 Mark launched the world’s first free-to-list art resale website ArtRehome.com

Such an innovative new idea, its launch was featured with a full page article in The Telegraph and has grown to feature thousands of listings from artists, galleries and single collectors from all over the globe.

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Movies

Marcello Marcello

In 2002, Mark decided to sit down and pen his first screenplay. Ten days later, Marcello’s Date (later to be filmed as Marcello Marcello) was written and within days, started to gain interest from the industry.

It went through three producer’s hands before being secured by Swiss/French director, Denis Rabaglia who, in 2007, brought it to life in Italy on a co-production through C-Film and Zero Pictures on the island of Ventotene.

The film went on to win best film at St Louis Film Festival in 2009 and the subsequent novel, Marcello’s Date has sold worldwide. Here’s the story and trailer:

Marcello Marcello: Italy, 1956. In the picturesque island of Amatrello, a unique custom keeps the young men of the village busy: when a girl turns eighteen, every boy is invited to bring a gift for her first date. However the gift is not for the girl, but for the father… who will ultimately determine which boy takes her on her first rendezvous!

Eighteen-year-old fisherman’s son Marcello doesn’t care about this tradition until he sets eyes on the enchanting Elena, the daughter of the Mayor, who has returned to the island and – according to the tradition – has come of age.

As time runs out and competition rises, Marcello comes up with the perfect gift for the Mayor. But getting that gift isn’t easy. Soon, he is forced to barter with the entire village, as everyone seems to want something from someone else. Marcello’s frantic quest ensues, evolving into a process of reconciliation among the village’s inhabitants.

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Movies

Kaya

Kaya: In June 2011, Mark was commissioned to write a screenplay about the life of Mauritian musician and political icon, Joseph Topize, locally know as Kaya.

Born in 10 August 1960, Kaya became famous as the creator of “Seggae”, a fusion of sega and reggae, two of the most popular music genres in Mauritius. A local hero, Kaya went on to tour in Europe with his friend and peer, Bob Marley.

On February 16, 1999, and at the height of Kaya’s success, the republican movement organised a free concert for the decriminalisation of ganja and there he was arrested and taken to prison.

Despite his wife and supporters raising the 10,000 rupees for the release of the artist, due to various blunders of the lawyers and especially a lack of political support for the MR to release quickly, Kaya was never released and was subsequently found dead in his cell on the morning of Sunday, February 21, 2013.

The official version states that Kaya, suffering from a lack of drugs, broke his skull by throwing himself against the walls of his cell. Against a second opinion requested by the wife of Kaya, conducted by a coroner, Dr. Ramstein, this theory was contradicted and showed that the victim had been beaten. To date, no official explanation has been forthcoming about his demise.

Three days of  riots followed soon after his death, causing one of the major social upheavals in both Mauritius and the surrounding islands.

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Music

Music

Mark has been in the music business for over 35 years, first as session drummer and then on to guitarist, music writer and finally score writer for films and television.

He started his career at sixteen as drummer for legendary Coventry punk band, Squad. He cut his teeth by touring with The Specials and releasing their Melody Maker Single of the week, Red Alert.

Within a year, Mark had moved to Bristol and co-founded Stereo Models, their first recordings brought out on the cult ‘Avon Calling‘ album. From thereon in, Mark started his session drumming career.In 1983, he joined chart topping band, Mud, with whom he toured extensively for three years. He went on to work with Johnny Hates Jazz on a German TV tour and then settled down as musical director for The New Seekers.

During this time he founded his own band, Red Hot Red, with two friends – his first foray into writing music – and the band went on to gain the interest of Charisma Records founder and Genesis manager, Tony Stratton-Smith.

Mark continued writing and in 2001 attracted the attention of music legend, Harold Faltermeyer (Beverly Hills CopTop Gun score writer) and was shipped out to Germany to work on his own album produced by Harold. The two got on so well, they started writing together for other bands and in 1993, Mark moved to Berlin to sign a contract as in-house writer for BMG (Bertelsmann Music Group).

Over the next ten years Mark wrote music for bands such as The Weather GirlsCulture Beat and the theme tune for Axel Schulz‘s World Title match against George Foreman, Hero of the Night.

He also wrote music and lyrics for many  films and TV shows including the Hollywood epic ‘The New Adventures of Pinocchio‘ starring Martin Landau. Mark continues to occasionally write scores with his friend and music partner, Rainer Oleak.

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Environmental

Environmental

Disillusioned with the way waste batteries were being handled in the UK, in 2007 Mark approached his council to see what solutions could be found in his parish. After weeks of navigating the red-tape involved in carrying ‘Hazardous’ waste, with the help of Rachael Bice at Cornwall Council and Gitty Ankers at the Environment Agency, Mark found a loop-hole and so received permission to put a collection box in his local Post Office in Portscatho.

Through press reports, more and more people found out about what Mark had achieved, so he started helping other people do it all over Cornwall and within a year there were over 50 locations. And so the CoBRA Scheme (Community Battery Recycling Alliance) was born.

Mark then went on to help other councils around the UK set up the scheme in their areas and by 2010, he was approached by Nigel Harvey of Recolight (the UK’s specialist Low Energy Light Bulb compliance scheme) to set up a similar scheme to collect Low Energy Light Bulbs nationwide.

The CoBRA Scheme now operates in almost every county in the UK, has won six national awards, a multitude of recognitions from organisations like Rotary Club of Great Britain and one Global nomination for a Katerva Award (considered, “The Nobel of Sustainability”). Oh,

and in the four years between 2007 & 2011, its 50 initial volunteers have helped collect over 50 tonnes of batteries!

For his environmental achievements, Mark was offered an unconditional fellowship of the RSA (Royal Society of Arts).

Below are two promotional videos developed by creative filmmaker, Sam Duggan, to help promote CoBRA to potential volunteers and an interview with Mark about CoBRA’s inception made by Business Link Convergence, a funding partner for CoBRA.

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