The Adventure Art of Mort Künstler


The Adventure Art of Mort Kunstler

Art by Mort Künstler – Mort began his art career as an illustrator for pulp paperbacks, posters, and men’s magazines. He did some early work for Aurora model kits boxes for their historical kit series, most notably, Raising the Flag a Iwo Jima kit. He did movie posters in the 1970’s for The Poseidon Adventure and The Taking of Pelham 123. He used an alias, ‘Mutz’ to do illustrations for the back of Mad magazine. Later he turned his art talents to American Civil War subject matter and is highly regarded in the field. His painting, ‘The High Water Mark’ was accepted into The Gettysburg National Museum in 1988.



Aurora – Godzilla – Model Kit w/conversion

Aurora Godzilla 3
Godzilla – Aurora / Polar Lights Model Kit

With Cult of Personality Replacement Head

This is my Godzilla model-kit which I completed in June, 2013.

I painted it the standard Godzilla-gray (2 shades of gray, off white and black). I built a base and background for the kit display.  I used the Cult of Personality conversion/custom head, which I further customized by leaving out the train car (it would be in the mouth) and doing a little sculpting around the mouth to even out the face.

I picked out photos from the internet for the background. I liked this skyline, because of its open spaces and contrast. I later discovered it is Chicago. So… Big-G invades Chicago!
Aurora Godzilla 5 Aurora Godzilla 4

Aurora Godzilla 7  Aurora Godzilla 8

godzilla model g replacement head
Aurora Godzilla

Aurora ‘Forgotten Prisoner’ model kit

Forgotten prisoner 5 prisoner box

Aurora – The Forgotten Prisoner – Model Kit

Aurora / Moebius Model Kit
The Forgotten Prisoner of Castel-Mare
Frightening Lightning’ (glow in the dark)

This is my Forgotten Prisoner model-kit. I completed it in early May, 2013.

Forgotten prisoner 1

I did not paint the ‘skeleton or skull’ pieces because I did not want to cover the glow parts.

Forgotten prisoner 7

The rusty chains were an important detail for me. I made rust marks down the stone wall – always seen where chain meets stone.

Forgotten prisoner 6 Forgotten prisoner 8

Close up detail of the rusty chain and spider-webbed doorway.

see my: Tyrannosaurus vs Triceratops Model Kit

The Aurora Monsters (2010) – movie review

aurora models documentaryThe Aurora Monsters: the Model Craze that Gripped the World
documentary (2010)

The Aurora Monsters is a documentary chronicling the rise of monster model-kits as a hobby and collector item and solidifying its place in Americana. It is hosted by Friday Night Horror movie host Zacherely, and his Muppet-looking dragon, Gorgo. (from the NY area late 1950’s – 60’s)

It is a series of interviews with those who began at Aurora Model Kit Company, worked on projects and desigAurora James Bamaned the kits, as well as, newer model-kit designers and collectors. The hosting shtick is a bit silly and seemingly geared toward children but the interviews are informative and entertaining. Among the interviewees are: Artist, James Bama Andrew Yanches, product manager of Aurora models in 1960’s and 70’s — Ray Meyers, sculptor of the famous kits, Godzilla, The Bride, and GhidrahDave Cochram, artist and sculptor. All of these men were players in the original monster model scene.

There are also interviews with newer model kit makers and aficionados, including: Jeff Yagher who sculpted models that looked closer to the film characters, quite often by using Aurora ZacherelyBama’s original artwork as his guide. Actor, Daniel Roebuck shows us his collection of model kits from the early Aurora models to some newer kits. Frank Winspur of Moebius Models tells the story of how he was a fan of the kits when he was young and later went on to purchase many of the original molds to save them from the scrap heap and to re-issue many of the old monster model designs. Matt and Tom from Sideshow Collectibles discuss the Aurora influence on the items they produce and sell.

If you are interested in the evolution and history of monster model kits, or are inclined to start your own collection and want to get familiar with what is on the market, this would be a great place to start. For me it was a nostalgic look back to my childhood. When the other kids in the neighborhood were excelling at sports, I had my model kits to keep me busy.

Aurora Ray Meyers Aurora Daniel Roebuck

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