08.06 — 10.10.2018One Man ShowVik Muniz

Vik Muniz is internationally renowned for his creative works that challenge traditional art forms and question the nature of representation and perception.

Muniz began his artistic career as a sculptor and later shifted his focus to graphic arts and photography. Inspired by postmodernist approaches of artists like Cindy Sherman and Jeff Koons, he employs popular images in his works, presenting them in a fresh and novel manner which exemplifies a fundamental idea of contemporary art—the significance of the concept over the mere uniqueness of visual context.

In his artistic practice, Muniz frequently employs everyday materials and objects such as sugar, chocolate syrup, wire, and discarded items to create large-scale reproductions of the artworks by world-famous artists. These temporary replicas are then captured through a series of high-resolution photographs, allowing Muniz to rediscover and reinterpret masterpieces by Van Gogh, Picasso, Malevich, Klimt, Mondrian, and Matisse.

Through his art, Muniz not only introduces audiences to the concept of appropriation in photography but also emphasizes the importance of employing innovative techniques in artistic creation. His work prompts contemplation on the primacy of ideas and the diverse forms of expression. Muniz himself describes his role as that of an “observer of the skirmish between structuralist and poststructuralist criticism.”

Beyond his artistic exploration, Muniz is committed to the belief that art can be a catalyst for positive change in the world and should not remain exclusive to elitist circles. His work often serves as commentary on global social and environmental issues, frequently accompanied by documentary reports that shed light on social inequality, poverty, and the lack of support for vulnerable groups within society (‘Waste Land’, 2010; ‘This is not a Ball,’ 2014).

Time magazine named Muniz one of the leading artists of the new millennium and the New York Times has recommended his work as a sure-fire antidepressant, describing it as “an idea wrapped in surprise and laughter.” Vik Muniz participates in many educational and social projects in Brazil and the United States. In 2011, he was appointed as a UNESCOGoodwill Ambassador. In 2014, Vik began construction of Escola Vidigal, a school of art and technology for children from low-income families in Rio de Janeiro, and in 2015 his series “Colonies” was featured in the Gates Foundation project “The Art of Saving a Life”.

Muniz lectures at major universities and museums around the world, such as Oxford, Harvard and Yale Universities; The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), New York; and The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, as well as in public venues, including TED conferences, The World Economic Forum, an internship program at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture.

“This Is Not a Ball” is a documentary created by Vik Muniz and director Juan Rendón, presented at the exhibition, was filmed on the eve of the World Cup in Brazil in 2014. Muniz traveled the world for nine months, visiting Rio de Janeiro, Mexico City, New York, Boston, Paris, Kyoto, Nuremberg in Germany and Sialkot in Pakistan, where he researched the influence of football on the social life and general culture of these cities. During his trip, Muniz met with representatives of various groups: members of the largest football clubs, social activists and distinguished scientists. The film tells the stories of people inspired by the idea of football, while at the same time touching on topics of society, history, astrophysics and gender policy. Leading up to the World Cup, Muniz created one of his largest scale projects, an installation of 10,000 footballs in Mexico City’s Azteca Stadium. Pictures of the installation and the balls used to create it were later sold at an auction in support of various charity funds.

08.06 — 10.10.2018One Man ShowVik Muniz