Monday, 6 July 2015

Meet Mike K. Viner

Mike Viner

Caricature Sculptures

I'm having so much fun finding out about all these creative people and their amazing work.

Mike Viner is no exception. Mike was born in St Petersburg in Russia and now lives in Israel. He got a Higher Degree in the University of Cinematography and Television.

When I first saw Mike's sculptures I was astounded at the accuracy.
The detail in each and every figure is just perfect, every hair and every wrinkle. Mike has captured it all, even their familiar facial expressions.
Bruce Willis is a prime example of that, such a recognisable expression.

Mike works with Polymer Clay on a metal carcass and what is amazing is that he doesn't paint the sculptures he just uses the natural colour of the polymer clay along with blending. Once the Polymer Clay has been thermally treated it is as durable as plastic.
I find that quite incredible that there is no painting done, just looking at Bruce Willis' head and face the different tones and shadows.

These little sculptures just make you smile don't they, the fact they are so recognisable but with some very large features.. I love that Mike opted for Caricature for his sculptures.  They are so much fun.

They're often based on the Actor playing the Character so here we have Robert De Niro as Paul Vitti from Analyse This and Morgan Freeman as Red from Shawshank Redemption. I love recognising their character as well as the famous Actors that they are. You can almost hear their lines from the films.

Meryl Streep here as Donna from Mamma Mia – love that, you can almost hear her singing! And as for Jack (love his Crocs) in his beachwear how can you not be enchanted with the perfect (albeit much smaller) likeness. His eyebrows and forehead are just so unmistakably Jack Nicholson.

Here is Mike's fitting tribute to the one and only amazing Robin Williams, perfect!

I love this The Godfather (who doesn't!) it is one of my favourite films and this little fella (I don't think many people in the film would have come out alive calling Don Corleone a 'little fella') brings back all the memories from the film, the detail here, it's just so realistic, incredible just incredible, Mike is so talented.

I'm not going to share any more with you here, you will need to visit Mike's sites to see them – I will link them all below, definitely worth a good look.

So, now we've seen what he can do, let's meet Mike Viner:

Please tell us your name, where you're from and how old you are? 

My artistic name is Mike K. Viner, I was born in Saint-Petersburg – the Cultural Capital of Russia:-)
I'm 36, and I live and work now in Israel, Netanya.

Tell us about your art now and what you do

I specialize in sculptural caricature, primarily celebrities caricature images, plus photo-based portrait sculptures on private comissions.
In general - my sculptures are 20-25 cm. high, weigh about 3 kilos, they are made of polymer clay becoming durable after thermal processing.

From the very start my crucial point was to find an individual style which would make my works unmistakably distinguished from the others of the same category. And that aim is definitely reached, whether you like my art or not, it is hardly associated with any other artist. The singularity lies both in original visual aesthetic form (individual proportions exaggeration, specific mixture of realism and grotesque) and in individually developed sculptural technique (including unique paint-free technique of working with just polymer original colors).
Most of you will find the more specific details boring and that is natural and right - speaking about art we rather prefer looking, don't we:-)

What is your earliest creative memory?

I started my way to art in the earliest childhood, about 7 years old, with risky clay satire on Socialist leaders, though the risk was in fact realized rather by my parents:-)

Do you ever suffer from a creative block and if so how do you get yourself out of it?

I can't remember any... maybe because the creative process itself is the best way from any block:-)

Who inspires you?

Certainly the fabulous models of my sculptures themselves do. When for instance I admire some outstanding movie character I can't help but immediately start to to consider him/her as an object for my art:-)
And besides in fact the reality itself is an indispensable source of inspiration for me, with all its numerous components... from every event, every phrase, every face I never fail to draw humor and positive for my art.

What is your favourite piece of work that you've created?

Well, I really take a risk to offend the others... but I love my old good De Niro... I truly admire the real De Niro, and specifically in that Paul Vitti fantastic role! And every time I look at him he keeps saying "god bless you you've got a ... gift:-)
That's part of the reason I love your work, the characters are so recognisable you can hear the lines they say.

What are your creative ambitions for the future?

They haven't changed yet:-) First I've always been fascinated by animation movies (stop motion animation), so I'd definitely be happy with an opportunity to try myself in that industry.
And one more perspective - in fact I've always meant my sculptures primarily for their prototypes, I've always wondered about their possible reaction, the impact from the meeting with their big-foot clones. So I'd love to have an opportunity to present the small funny copies to their prominent models:-)
I'm sure they would love them!

How do you silence your inner critic?

That is my key assistant., why should I silence him... I prefer to listen to him attentively and cooperate:-) (great answer!)

What do you do when you're not being creative?

Elvis Presley CD helps in any circumstances. Well, and a good movie of course, with some remarkable impressive characters:-)
Can't go wrong with a bit of Elvis!
Tell us where we can find your work and your social media sites.

I can be reached by e-mail:

To learn more please take a look around the site:

Photo resource: Mike's Facebook Gallery

Click HERE to see Mike's Portfolio of work

It's been fantastic getting to know a little about Mike, he is very talented, his work is exceptional .. the people that he chooses to sculpt are very cool people and Mike captures them perfectly.

I hope you will check out Mike's sites.

Thank you for your time Mike and I wish you nothing but success for the future, I hope the real life versions get to see their miniature selfs because I'm convinced they'd love them and if I were them I'd be flattered that you'd chosen me to work your magic on.
Can't wait to see who you do next!

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