Most celebrities aren’t immortalized by Barbie manufacturer, Mattel, and for one Brazilian artist out of necessity came invention.
“I always wanted to have a large collection of celebrity dolls just like I saw one day on TV,” said Marcus Vinícius da Silva Bernardo in an exclusive interview with FYINTERTAINMENT. “But I realized that I would not find all the characters I wanted in stores. So I decided to create my own custom dolls.”
The 47-year-old artist who affectionately goes by Marcus Baby — an ode to famous Brazilian singer Baby do Brasil — began creating dolls in the likeness of celebrities more than a decade ago.
“I’ve never been very skilled at making sculptures and have always enjoyed doing collage work on different objects. I saw in Barbie dolls my raw material,” he said.
The time frame for completing a doll can range from hours to months, all depending on Marcus Baby’s inspiration and available material.
He has created over 200 dolls inspired by celebrities, including singer Rihanna’s CFDA Awards sheer, crystal gown; actress Lupita Nyong’o’s Oscars Prada dress; Brazilian soccer star Neymar; rapper Nicki Minaj; Axl Rose from Guns n Roses; and former Brazilian president Dilma Rousseff.
“I made this doll would be just to honor the first woman president of my country,” he said, adding that his creation wasn’t politically driven.
Rousseff, Brazil’s first female president, was impeached after she was convicted of mishandling the nation’s budget.
Well-known in his native country, it was his most recent miniature version of a pregnant Beyonce at this year’s Grammys — this is his third figurine of the “Lemonade” singer — that transcended continent lines. Marcus Baby welcomes the attention for his dolls, but he doesn’t intend to sell any of his statuettes.
“I do not present anyone with my dolls,” he said. “My only interest was to make my private and exclusive collection of dolls.”