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Come see million LEGO bricks transformed into world-famous artworks and endangers animals.
Here is a look at” The Art of the Brick” by artist Nathan Sawaya.
A series of artworks since prehistory
The exhibition started with the brick replica of one of the first prehistoric drawings. Artist Nathan Sawaya focuses on one of the wild horses from the Lascaux prehistoric cave dated 17,000 BCE (France). The Lego replica includes 1,790 pieces.
The following sculptures represent a broad spectrum of art and culture from various civilizations.
From Cleopatra to Mona Lisa, you will learn more about the original artwork and be amazed by these 3D replicas.
This 16th-century pendant mask probably represents Iyoba Idia, the mother of the king, ObaEsigie. The latter may have worn it to celebrate his mother during different rites. In Benin, ivory is the symbol of purity associated with the God of the sea, Olokun. Ivory was also a commercial material trade with the Portuguese. Look closely at the crown on the mask: figures are Portuguese merchants.
Legend: Benin Mask, 16th Century, Nigeria
In addition, the exhibit displays some sculptures from the “human condition,” “through the darkness,” and “Metamorphosis” collections.
About the artist
New York artist Nathan Sawaya started his career as a layer before becoming a contemporary artist. He is focused on large-scale sculptures and started the LEGO® bricks exhibition in 2007. He mentioned that “These works are very personal to me since they reflect my growth as an artist as I strove to discover my creative identity.”
PERNiCiEM: The Endangered Species Connection.
Artist Nathan Sawaya and photographer Dean West collaborated to highlight 13 endangered species: African elephant, whale shark, Western lowland gorilla, polar bear, Northern white rhinoceros, Artic fox, Beluga whale, Cheetah, Chilean flamingo, giraffe, hawksbill, Malayan tiger, and military macaw.
Endangered species are plants or animals considered at risk of extinction. “PERNiCiEM,” Latin for “extinction,” focuses on four main habitats: oceans, forest, arctic, and grasslands.
To envision animals in their natural habitats, the Lego sculptures were also included in West’s photography. By creating an artificial reality, Nathan Sawaya and Dean West question viewers about climate change and human environmental impact.
The Malayan tiger is one example of a critically endangered species. “Three of the nine known subspecies have become entirely extinct. […] Its numbers have dipped from 3,000 in the 1950s, plummeting to” less than 400 today.
“In Pieces” collection is another association with photography. The American postcards include Lego constructions that will distinctly appear as you look closely at the image. The brick-by-brick constructions are on display next to the digital photography.
Ready to explore Lego bricks sculptures?
*COVD-19 update as of December 2021*
– Please wear a mask and practice a physical distance of 6 feet between yourself and others
– Please check the California Science Center and L.A County’s health and safety protocols before your visit
Plan your visit:
- Exhibit on view from April 1st, 2021 – January 2nd, 2022
- Location: California Science Center, 700 Exposition Park Drive, Los Angeles, CA 90037
- Hours: 10:00am-5:00pm.
- Admission: $19 per adult. Timed-entry reservations are required for all guests.
- Duration: I spent 45 minutes discovering it.
- Parking: paid on-site lot and street parking
- More information is available at https://californiasciencecenter.org/exhibits/the-art-of-the-brick
Article based on my visit in November 2021