Review and photos by Tomhetleere. Edited by Plesiosauria.
I am quite pleased to be able to finally share pics of this monster sculpture done by my good friend Malcolm Mlodoch. Those addicted to the prehistoric mammals will get a huge (in every sense) fix with this guy. When it comes to Cenozoic fauna, I am even more selective than with dinos, so you may trust me when I tell you that this is a high quality product. I was blown away when I first saw the pics of the finished product, but I couldn’t believe my eyes when I held it in my hands for the first time, as it exceeded my expectations completely.
I am surprised that there are not many figures of this animal, it’s very distinctive (nothing else than the biggest terrestrial mammal: some specimens are 5.5 mts tall and 8 mts long). These creatures were actually related to rhinos (that explains Malcolm’s choice of colour) although they had no head ornamentation. They lived from the Eocene to the Oligocene in a span of almost 15 million years, grazing peacefully without many natural foes. Their weight is still a matter of speculation, but it does appear that previous numbers were exaggerations: while they may not have weighed 30 tons, they could have reached the 15 tons mark. In any case, it appears that these critters were more agile than we once thought, I read that some of their bones were actually hollow. They are fairly popular and had had their share of TV guest appearances. The Indricotherium / Baluchitherium is a classic animal that experienced a surge of attention back in the 60’s.
The most remarkable figures I can think of right now are the very cool Nabisco miniature version and the execrable Procon ‘Indricotherium’, a slightly smaller version that looks like a cross between a moose and a cartoonish camel. There’s also a Starlux version (it’s not half bad if you don’t mind the primitive look of that company) and the Paleocraft resin kit. Of all the versions I have mentioned, in my opinion only the Paleocraft would be a worthy contester, but even then I would have to say that the Fauna Casts Indri wins because it’s so much more affordable.
This triumphant version, reminiscent of Charles R. Knight’s drawing, is not static at all. A subtly curved torse and the raised paw provide it with a sense of fluidity. The paintjob is also one of my favorites: the grey drybrushing blends nicely with the brownish wash(es). I also liked the way the muzzle was done: the effect of a simple wash makes it look almost wet. As for the structure itself, Malcolm sculpted a very fine set of large muscles, including a set of thick extremities, quite appropiate for this huge animal. Although it’s very large (around 25 cm long, I suspect only slightly bigger than the 1:40 premise), it’s rather light.
I had seen other members express their joy upon receiving this piece and now I know why is that. I look forward to seeing more big mammals made by dinonikes.
You can visit Malcolm’s forum board here.