In Conversation with:
Austin-based sculptor Brandon Mike is known for his concrete sculptures that range from soft, compact animals that adorn personal spaces to large-scale brutalist sculptures available for public viewing. We spent a spring day touring his studio, exploring his works-in-progress and picking his brain about the significance of sculpture.
Tell us a little bit about what you do.
I like to consider everyone to be a unique lens by which the infinite expresses itself. As a sculptor, my expression is primarily through concrete, metal, and cast bronze with an emphasis on creating work which resonates with symbolism and embodies a sense of timelessness. My work spans a breadth of categories from contemporary sculpture, to custom lighting, home goods and furniture.
How did you get your start as an artist, and how has your work evolved over the last few years?
I have been an artist for as long as I can remember, but long story short, I followed my instincts, quit my day job, and began prioritizing my resources towards the goal of creating what my heart wanted to make. Over time and a lot of trial and error later, I was able to create a path which made being a full-time artist possible. I’ve had to learn the art of business along the way, so diversifying my line to include more functional work was a huge step in growing my capabilities. It seems that my work has evolved with me over the years as I have grown as a person and now I feel a pull to create work with a greater purpose and a more inclusive ideology.
You tend to create works that have a certain weight to them, both literally and in scale. What draws you to creating monumental works?
I have always admired concrete as a medium because of its versatility and scalability, and now I aspire to develop work that is more generally accessible to the public as a way of giving back to the community and to share with the world freely. Sculpture is one of the oldest art forms, which is inherently ingrained in us all, and that connection is a powerful tool to inspire others to see the similarities in one another, facilitate introspective conversation, and to generate a focal point of community art experience.
Can you share a little bit about what you're working on these days?
Currently, I am working on developing new product lines, private sculptural commissions, applying for public and commercial grants and generally just riding this crazy wave of life, remembering to enjoy the ride.