Vicente José de Oliveira Muniz, known as Vik Muniz (São Paulo, December 20, 1961), is a Brazilian artist.
He continuously experiments with new methods and materials.
He is best known for creating stunning works of art using unconventional materials such as waste, broken objects, and even food ingredients like sugar and chocolate.
He began his artistic journey as a student of advertising and publicity at the Fundação Armando Álvares Penteado (FAAP) in São Paulo, Brazil.
One of Muniz's most iconic pieces features the likeness of Sigmund Freud created entirely out of chocolate sauce.
Muniz also created the series Sugar Children (Crianças do Açúcar), for which he visited a sugar cane plantation in St. Kitts to photograph the children of the workers there.
He then returned to New York to reproduce the children's faces using brown paper and various types of sugar.
More recently, Muniz has expanded his creative palette to include large-scale works such as geoglyphs carved into the earth and towering piles of garbage.
In 2007, Muniz's chocolate portrait series "His & Hers" was offered for sale in the 81st annual Christmas Book of luxury department store Neiman Marcus for a staggering $110,000.
The purchase also included a 60 x 48 photographic reproduction of the artwork.
Muniz donated the proceeds to Centro Espacial Rio de Janeiro, a charitable organization that helps children and teenagers in Brazil through the arts.
He believes that the best way to help the poor is to give them direct aid, rather than using art as a political tool to raise awareness.
Recently, Muniz collaborated with Berengo Studio to create a series of glass sculptures that combine his message with the craftsmanship of Murano glassblowers.
The project, titled "Glassworks," features three-dimensional recreations of some of Muniz's most famous works, such as "Pictures of Garbage," "Aftermath" and "Postcards from Nowhere."
In general, Vik Muniz's artistic journey has been marked by a willingness to challenge conventions and explore the potential of unconventional materials.