Rui Sanches was born in Lisbon, Portugal, in 1954. He studied for three years at the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Lisbon, but dropped out in 1974 to join Ar.Co – Centro de Arte e Comunicação Visual, in Lisbon, where he enrolled in the painting and drawing ateliers. From 1977 to 1980, he studied at the Goldsmiths’ College, in London, where he completed the Bachelor of Arts degree and, from 1980 to 1982, with a grant from the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, he studied at the Yale University, USA, where he obtained the degree of Master of Fine Arts. During the 1980s, his work was marked by clear references to 17th-19th centuries sources in the history of art. Wood and its derivatives – plywood, wood shavings, etc. – are the sculptor’s materials of choice, sometimes combined with pipes, steel, or, starting in the 1990s, with glass or mirrors, for example. From the 1990s onwards, Rui Sanches detaches himself from the historical references, introduces modeled elements, hitherto absent, into his work, and explores a new constructive process – the stacking of flat shapes to form three-dimensional elements.