THE ART OF THE BRICK
We’ve all played with Lego at some point, more than likely in our younger days. It is a universal toy, familiar in almost every culture. Maybe this explains the success of sculptor, Nathan Sawaya who took our childhood game a step further and begun creating magnificent pieces of art using nothing but Lego. Today his work has been seen in galleries across the world.
This year, a 20ft Tyrannosaurus Rex will feature among 74 other Lego creations in London for the first time.
As well as fun modern pieces, the exhibition will also include Sawaya’s rendition of classic art such as the Mona Lisa and Venus de Milo made of Lego as he stated the intention was to get kids interested in art history but through a medium they are familiar with – Lego.
Nathan’s love for Lego began when he was 5. He would beg his parents for a dog and when they refused, he resorted to building his own dog out of Lego. This is when he realised that he could make much more than what was on the box or instructions. However, like most of us, he left that behind as he got older and attended NYU law school and became an attorney. He mentioned how he would always go home and search for a creative outlet after working 9 to 5 and this is when he rediscovered his love for Lego. Today Sawaya has more than 2.5 million colored bricks in his New York and Los Angeles art studios. His work is painstakingly crafted and is both beautiful and playful. Sawaya’s ability to transform LEGO bricks into something new, his devotion to scale and color perfection, the way he conceptualises the action of the subject matter, enables him to elevate an ordinary toy to the status of fine art.