Versatile dimensions of the artist Mik Simcic
Mik was born into a science-oriented family, to a father, Professor and PhD of Veterinary medicine, one of the pioneers of Veterinary for Pet animals, and to a mother, Master of Pharmacy. Everyone expected their little son would become a doctor. But at his age of 14, Mik’s unbridled passion for artistic creativity was awakened. As a young boy, eager to experience the life of a teenager, he attended uninvited the opening of an exhibition, knowing that they were offering free drinks there. In order not to look suspicious, he acted as if he was looking at the exhibited paintings. And then he saw them. He was so taken over by the art that he immediately went home and began painting.
His broad creativity was further developed at the Academy of Sculpture and Painting and at the Academy of Film, Television and Theater, and thus in 1982 he earned a double academic title at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia.
During his compulsory military service in the Yugoslav National Army, he was instructed, as the only educated sculptor in the Army on the territory of Slovenia, to make 8 portrait sculptures of the revolutionaries of NOB during World War II and a monument commemorating the transfer of the wounded to the liberated territory of the Partisan army. For making that he was awarded a military decoration and beside that, he ensured himself a 24/7 liberty with an excuse that he needed time for a creative process, a privilege which in those days was almost impossible for an ordinary soldier.
As a freelance artist, Mik worked in the fields of sculpture, painting and theatre, which enabled him to take an active part in the cultural activities throughout the Europe.
For his master education he carved the recollection of Juliet in Verona (Italy).
He co-created avant-garde theatrical performance at the Theater in Minsk (Belarus), at the very same time when the dissolution of the Soviet Union took place.
In Chemnitz (Germany) he created a monolithic stone sculpture of a woman – a symbol of a worldwide friendship, right at the historical time of the fall of the Berlin Wall. He began creating sculpture in East Germany, but the opening of the statue was in reunified Germany.
At the time of Slovenia’s independence, he had an announced exhibition at the Yugoslav Cultural Center in New York, where he was to present Yugoslav art. He rejected the exhibition and instead exhibited paintings at the Slovenian Church in the East Village and there at the opening presented his view of the situation in Slovenia.
For the opening of the highest building in Slovenia, The Crystal Palace in BTC Ljubljana, he made a monumental sculpture The Abduction of Europa, of stone, glass and bronze.
Along his numerous exhibitions in Slovenia, he, over the years, presented himself with his paintings and sculptures in Rome (Italy), Zagreb (Croatia), Vienna (Austria), New York (USA), St. Juliens (Malta), London (UK), Chemnitz (Germany), Monaco (Monaco) and Paris (France).
In 1996 Mik also opened his own gallery, named Gallery 56, in Ljubljana, where he has been constantly exhibiting his work.
His whole life he has been planning an ambitious international cultural and political project “Bridges of Trust” with a clearly defined idea of international networking, friendship, trust and new ethic. In 2014 he saw the opportunity to make an important step in that direction by presenting himself to the U.S. First Family at that time, with a double oil portrait of Malia and Sasha Obama, for which Mrs. Michelle Obama send him a letter of thanks with a handwritten signature. Dr. Jerome C. Ford, internationally active and recognized appraiser of works of art, the President of Items of Value, Inc, and the official appraiser of gifts given to the US First Family commented the painting to be »very exciting to look at and the faces exceedingly well done« and found Mik’s other works »absolutely superb, intriguing, and original«.
Mik has been bestowed the honour of getting personally acquainted with one of the world’s most recognized leader who calls for the revival of fundamental values of humanity, Pope Francis. To honor the efforts of the Holy Father the largest series of portraits of the living pope in the history of the Vatican was created. The series presents seven portraits in bronze that depict different states of the spirit of the Holy Father and is therefore named “The Seven Endless Moments of Pope Francis”. One of that images Mik carved into Carrara marble, with the prior approval of the Pope. Sculptor gave the marble bust to His Holiness at a private audience in June 2019. The Holy Father personally approved that all portraits may be presented to the world public at the Vatican Museums.
Mik seeks knowledge and new skills throughout his whole life. He believes that fine art must still remain a sophisticated expression of a deeper spiritual state through the use of quality painting or sculptural skills.
While his work is very versatile and his technique has been changing through time, his artistic expression has always been influenced by the fact that he has been all the time oscillated between the Northern rigor and the Mediterranean softness.