b. 1961, Brazil

Vik Muniz Artworks

Enshrining his unusual assemblages in the medium of photography, Vik Muniz's art adds new dimensions to established notions of representation.

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The Best of Life

His 1989 series 'The Best of LIFE' was inspired by photographs from the coffee table publication The Best of LIFE, a book he had owned but lost while moving house. Muniz drew the legendary images in the book by memory— iconic images such as Kiss at Times Square and The Man on the Moon (1989)—then photographed the drawings and presented the photos as final works.

Another series, titled 'Pictures of Clouds' (2001), presents photographs taken by the artist of clouds left by a skywriter as they gradually disintegrated and vanished.

Familiar Faces

In contrast to fast fading formations of clouds which can easily disappear from memory, art masterpieces such as Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa (1503) and photographs of Marlon Brando and Marilyn Monroe are deeply planted within popular consciousness.

Muniz's depictions of these images, however, rework the iconography in non-traditional mediums that align with the content of the image. His 2004 portrait of Marilyn Monroe, Marilyn Monroe (Pictures of Diamonds), is made of diamonds—in reference to her popular song 'Diamonds are a Girl's Best Friend'.

In his 'Pictures of Dust' series (2001), Muniz replicates the works of various famous mid-century American artists—such as Donald Judd's Untitled (1965) and Richard Serra's Prop (1968)—in dust collected from the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. Discussing the piece in his Joseph M Cohen Family Collection biography, Muniz said: 'Dust is pieces of hair and skin. I think people scratch their heads a lot in museums; that gets mixed with the residue from the artworks themselves. That's the ultimate bond between the museum visitor and the artwork'.

Pictures of Garbage

Muniz has, over the past decade, expanded his visual repertoire beyond contemporary culture to include more personal encounters. In 'Pictures of Garbage' (2008), Muniz presents a series of photographs of garbage pickers he encoutered at an open-air dumpsite called Jardim Gramacho just outside of Rio de Janeiro.

Retaining his interest in iconography, however, he stages the pickers as the subjects of classical portraits, such as the slain titular revolutionary leader Jean-Paul Marat from Death of Marat (1793) by Jacques-Louis David's. Details in images were accentuated with the garbage that had been scavenged by the models.

In Waste Land (2010), the documentary film accompanying the series, directed by Lucy Walker, Muniz outlines that he wanted to 'change the lives of people with the same materials they deal with every day'. Indeed, with the critical acclaim and success of the documentary, the artist and the filmmakers have been able to donate more than $300,000 to Jardim Gramacho pickers' community.

Superfícies

Paying homage to 20th century modernist masters such as Pablo Picasso, Marcel Duchamp, and Sonia Delauney, Vik Muniz's ongoing series 'Superfícies (Surfaces)' (2019-Ongoing) brings renewed focus to physicality, surface and texture in abstract painting.

Often qualities overlooked in remembering such works, Muniz's photographs of his assemblages highlight these surface details, often made invisible in two-dimensional photographic reproductions, through layering and shadow.

Browse Artworks
Atalanta and Hippomenes, after Guido Reni by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork photography
Vik Muniz Atalanta and Hippomenes, after Guido Reni, 2006 Chromogenic print mounted on aluminum
236 x 360 cm
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Hercules and Omphale, after François Lemoyne by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork photography
Vik Muniz Hercules and Omphale, after François Lemoyne, 2007 Framed chromogenic print mounted on aluminum
229 x 183 cm
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Apollo and the Cumaean Sibyl, after Giovanni Domenico Cerrini by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork photography
Vik Muniz Apollo and the Cumaean Sibyl, after Giovanni Domenico Cerrini, 2007 Framed chromogenic print mounted on aluminum
262 x 360 cm
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Handmade: Letter Rack by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Handmade: Letter Rack, 2017 mixed media on archival inkjet print
101 x 76 cm
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Handmade: Interaction of Color 24 (Rectangles, Black Stripes) by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Handmade: Interaction of Color 24 (Rectangles, Black Stripes), 2017 Mixed media on archival inkjet print
76 x 56 cm
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Handmade: Interaction of Color 23 (Sunga and Tanga) by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Handmade: Interaction of Color 23 (Sunga and Tanga), 2017 Mixed media on archival inkjet print
76 x 56 cm
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Handmade: Sem título (Colored tears) by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Handmade: Sem título (Colored tears), 2016 mixed media on archival inkjet print
168 x 320 cm
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Metachrome (Untitled, 1976, after Tomie Ohtake) by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Metachrome (Untitled, 1976, after Tomie Ohtake), 2024 Archival inkjet print
101.6 x 103.5 cm
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Live Cash: Praia Rodrigues, after Johann Moritz Rugendas by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Live Cash: Praia Rodrigues, after Johann Moritz Rugendas, 2022 Archival inkjet print
101.6 x 134.4 cm
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Live Cash: Serra Ouro Branco, after Johann Moritz Rugendas by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Live Cash: Serra Ouro Branco, after Johann Moritz Rugendas, 2022 Archival inkjet print
101.6 x 134.6 cm
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Live Cash: Arara by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Live Cash: Arara, 2022 Archival inkjet print
122.2 x 101.6 cm
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Repro: Christina’s World, after Andrew Wyeth by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Repro: Christina’s World, after Andrew Wyeth, 2023 Archival inkjet print
101.6 x 149.1 cm
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Superfícies: Three Musicians, a partir de Pablo Picasso by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Superfícies: Three Musicians, a partir de Pablo Picasso, 2021 Inkjet printing on archival paper
127 x 146.1 cm
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Superfícies: Still Life, a partir de Pablo Picasso by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Superfícies: Still Life, a partir de Pablo Picasso, 2021 Inkjet printing on archival paper
91.4 x 123.2 cm
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Superfícies: Still Life with Fish, a partir de Picasso by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Superfícies: Still Life with Fish, a partir de Picasso, 2020 Inkjet printing on archival paper
76.2 x 90.4 cm
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Superfícies: The Reservoir at Horta de Erdo, a partir de Picasso by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Superfícies: The Reservoir at Horta de Erdo, a partir de Picasso, 2021 Iinkjet printing on archival paper
130.2 x 109.2 cm
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Superfícies: Nude Descending Staircase by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Superfícies: Nude Descending Staircase, 2021 Inkjet printing on archival paper
151.1 x 91.4 cm
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Surfaces: Still Life 1936, after Ben Nicholson by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Surfaces: Still Life 1936, after Ben Nicholson, 2021 Archival inkjet print
76.2 x 115.3 cm
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Postcards from Nowhere: Magic Kingdom by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Postcards from Nowhere: Magic Kingdom, 2020 Archival inkjet print
160 x 240.8 cm
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Repro: Ten Hummingbirds, after Martin Johnson Heade by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork photography, print
Vik Muniz Repro: Ten Hummingbirds, after Martin Johnson Heade, 2020 Archival inkjet print
152.4 x 250.2 cm
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Surfaces: Garden Design 2, after Burle Marx by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Surfaces: Garden Design 2, after Burle Marx, 2019 Mixed media
109.2 x 185.2 cm
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Verso (Back of the Painting): Ilha de Itamaraca by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork sculpture
Vik Muniz Verso (Back of the Painting): Ilha de Itamaraca, 2016 Mixed media object
82 x 108 x 6 cm
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Surfaces: Blue mess by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Surfaces: Blue mess, 2020 Mixed media
76.2 x 101.6 cm
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Surfaces: Untitled, after Sonia Delaunay by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Surfaces: Untitled, after Sonia Delaunay, 2019 Archival inkjet prints assembled in layers, unique
133.9 x 106.7 cm
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Surfaces: In Pieces, after Conrad Marca-Relli by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Surfaces: In Pieces, after Conrad Marca-Relli, 2019 Archival inkjet prints assembled in layers, unique
143.3 x 106.7 cm
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Surfaces: Calligraphy, after Carla Accardi by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Surfaces: Calligraphy, after Carla Accardi, 2019 Archival inkjet prints assembled in layers, unique
106.7 x 145.8 cm
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Surfaces: Untitled, after Ad Reinhardt by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Surfaces: Untitled, after Ad Reinhardt, 2019 Archival inkjet prints assembled in layers, unique
152.7 x 106.7 cm
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Surfaces: Territories by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Surfaces: Territories, 2019 Archival inkjet prints assembled in layers, unique
152.4 x 106.7 cm
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Surfaces: Fan, after Waldemar Cordeiro by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Surfaces: Fan, after Waldemar Cordeiro, 2019 Archival inkjet prints assembled in layers, unique
142.2 x 106.7 cm
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Repro: Centre Pompidou (Rythme, after Sonia Delaunay) by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork photography
Vik Muniz Repro: Centre Pompidou (Rythme, after Sonia Delaunay), 2019 Inkjet printing on archival paper
194.1 x 160 cm
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Imaginaria: Saint Barbara by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork photography
Vik Muniz Imaginaria: Saint Barbara, 2019 Archival inkjet print
199.6 x 150.1 cm
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Repro (Saints): Saint Lucy by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Repro (Saints): Saint Lucy, 2019 Archival inkjet print
129.5 x 109.2 cm
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Handmade: Mixed Feelings by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Handmade: Mixed Feelings, 2018 Archival inkjet print
76.2 x 55.9 cm
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Pictures of flowers: Shoes by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Pictures of flowers: Shoes, 2018 Digital c-print
242.3 x 180.3 cm
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Repro (saints): Archangel Micahel after Dorko Topalski by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Repro (saints): Archangel Micahel after Dorko Topalski, 2018 Archival inkjet print
81.8 x 59.1 inches
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Repro (saints): Santa Rita da Cassia by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Repro (saints): Santa Rita da Cassia, 2018 Archival inkjet print
87.3 x 59.1 inches
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Repro (Saints): Mary Magdalene, after Giovanni Girlamo Savoldo by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Repro (Saints): Mary Magdalene, after Giovanni Girlamo Savoldo, 2018 Archival inkjet print
64.5 x 59.1 inches
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Repro (Saints): Saint Therese of Lisieux by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Repro (Saints): Saint Therese of Lisieux, 2018 Archival inkjet print
77 x 63 inches
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Repro (Saints): Saint James, The Greater, after Guido Reni by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Repro (Saints): Saint James, The Greater, after Guido Reni, 2018 Archival inkjet print
83 x 60 inches
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Repro (Saints): Saint John the Baptist in the Wilderness by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Repro (Saints): Saint John the Baptist in the Wilderness, 2018 Archival inkjet print
80 x 60 inches
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Repro (Saints): Saint Agnes, after Simon Vouet by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Repro (Saints): Saint Agnes, after Simon Vouet, 2018 Archival inkjet print
75.8 x 59.1 inches
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Repro (Saints): Saint Sebastian, after Jose Ribera by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Repro (Saints): Saint Sebastian, after Jose Ribera, 2018 Archival inkjet print
70.7 x 60 inches
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Repro (Saints): Saint Peter, after Girolamo Batoni by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Repro (Saints): Saint Peter, after Girolamo Batoni, 2018 Archival inkjet print
71.6 x 59.1 inches
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Handmade: Letter rack (Acqua and grey ribbon) by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Handmade: Letter rack (Acqua and grey ribbon), 2017 Mixed media on archival inkjet print
76.2 x 55.88 cm
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Metachrome: The Abaporu, after Tarsila by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork print
Vik Muniz Metachrome: The Abaporu, after Tarsila, 2018 Archival pigment print
47.8 x 40 inches
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Handmade: Untitled Crumpled Paper Green Squares by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Handmade: Untitled Crumpled Paper Green Squares, 2016 mixed media on archival inkjet print ed one of a kind
64 x 54 cm
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Pictures of Clouds: 59th Bridge by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork photography
Vik Muniz Pictures of Clouds: 59th Bridge, 2002 Gelatin silver print
97 x 121 cm
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Metachrome: Italian Garden, after Klimt by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork painting
Vik Muniz Metachrome: Italian Garden, after Klimt, 2016 Archival pigment print
100 x 100 cm
Not for sale
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Two Nails by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Two Nails, 1987/2016 Gelatin silver print and nail
25.2 x 20.4 cm
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Handmade: Untitled (colored tears) by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Handmade: Untitled (colored tears), 2016 Mixed media on archival inkjet print
157 x 320 cm
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Handmade: Untitled Circles & Newspaper by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork mixed media
Vik Muniz Handmade: Untitled Circles & Newspaper, 2016 Mixed media on archival inkjet print
75 x 55 cm
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Postcards from Nowhere: View of Delft by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork painting
Vik Muniz Postcards from Nowhere: View of Delft, 2015 Digital C-print
180 x 216 cm
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Postcards from nowhere by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork photography
Vik Muniz Postcards from nowhere, 2014 Digital c print
180 x 245 cm
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Scrap Metal: Humming Bird by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork painting
Vik Muniz Scrap Metal: Humming Bird, 2012 Digital c print
130 x 100 cm
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Sandcastle #01 (Château de Chambord) by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork painting
Vik Muniz Sandcastle #01 (Château de Chambord), 2013 Digital c-print,
180 x 237.5 cm
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Colonies: Liver cell pattern 1 by Vik Muniz contemporary artwork painting
Vik Muniz Colonies: Liver cell pattern 1, 2014 Digital c-print,
100 x 100 cm
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