Nathan Sawaya: Recreator of LEGO

(Yellow: Nathan’s best-known art piece, comprising 11, 014 bricks.)

Metal, wood, clay or even a stone can all be perfect mediums of sculptural arts. But LEGO bricks? Give me a break, you might say. Or, Get out of here! I was not born yesterday. But I’m not kidding you. Larger-than-life sculptures made of nothing else but LEGO bricks are on display in Taipei. In the magical hands of Nathan Sawaya, LEGO has acquired a new life of its own.

Nathan is a New York-based artist who creates works of art with LEGO, which is probably one of the weirdest mediums you’d ever think of. But it is exactly the uniqueness of successfully applying the Lego medium to the modern art that has got  Nathan’s Lego exhibition, The Art of the Brick, selected by CNN as one of the must-see exhibits.

(I regard this succinct summary as the official statement of The Art of the Brick. )

The Art of the Brick lifted the curtain on July 14th in Taipei, the first stop of its Asian tour. Ads were up all over the place months ahead of the exhibition. I for one had been waiting for its grand opening for two months since I first got wind that it was coming to town.

 Nathan’s works of art are not all wild imaginations. Each of his creations has an informative story to tell. Most of them are inspiring. And nearly every piece on exhibit is to make you pause for thought, wondering not just about the amazing versatility of LEGO bricks but also the timelessness of those LEGO masterpieces, which have aptly captured a wide spectrum of the fragile human life.

(Symbol of Peace: What does it take to create peace? All the colors work harmoniously together yet the individual singularities are not obscured. That’s the key. This sculpture was created using 3,720 recycled bricks.)

Nathan’s works may not all be the results of wild imaginations, but they are bound to send your flight of fancy flying. As the exhibition shows, simple objects can be fantastic, insane, outrageous or unrealistic in expressions. Nathan uses his artistic creativity to maneuver the weirdest material he has found and comes up with spectacular effect!

(Stop, Look and Live utilizes 5, 940 bricks)

I was so moved by the exhibits that that little boy in me from childhood days was awakened, bringing back many fond memories of my boyhood. But Nathan’s displays attest to one thing: LEGO as a toy has miraculously morphed into a mind-blowing form of new art. An art that is awe-inspiring, pithy and electric.

Once you’re on the exhibit floor, try to appreciate each art work by alternating between gazing at a distance and taking a closer look a few steps nearer. Ponder how each object took shape and what kind of story could be underlying it. The exhibits are bound to kindle your interest and curiosity the moment they touch a chord with you. Go get that enlightening feeling for yourself. It’s time well spent seeing yourself saunter between those new art objects. I promise.

Date: 2012/7/14 – 10/14
Price: NT$ 250 (adults) ; NT$ 220 (students)
Address: Ln. 553, Sec. 4, Zhongxiao E. Rd., Xinyi Dist., Taipei City 110, Taiwan.


4 thoughts on “Nathan Sawaya: Recreator of LEGO

  1. Man, this is AWESOME! Seriously, I love stuff like this and hopefully he’ll bring the exhibit over here to Korea (hey, it’s not that far from Taipei). Thanks for sharing 🙂

    • Thanks for loving my article. The exhibit is currently touring Asia with Taipei being its 1st stop. Who knows, maybe the exhibit will be in Korea pretty soon!

  2. Pingback: Nathan Sawaya Takes My Questions « Sooper Jerry

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