The Art of the Brick, a captivating exhibition and the world’s largest display of LEGO® art, opens September 28 at the New York Hall of Science (NYSCI). Featuring more than 100 works of art created from over one million little LEGO bricks by contemporary artist Nathan Sawaya, The Art of the Brick is open through January 26.
“Everyone has had an experience with LEGO bricks in one way or another,” says Dan Wempa, Chief Operating Officer at NYSCI. “Seeing how things piece together and then taking them apart fosters engineering skills. And the open-ended nature of LEGO bricks helps people explore their creativity. The Art of the Brick is sure to inspire LEGO fans of all ages to pick up some LEGO bricks and start creating.”
Through his devotion to spatial perfection, Sawaya transforms LEGO bricks into thought-provoking sculptures, elevating the toy to the realm of contemporary art. The collection features many of Sawaya’s original pieces, as well as re-imagined versions of some of the world’s most famous art masterpieces, such as Michelangelo’s David, Van Gogh’s Starry Night and Da Vinci’s Mona Lisa. In addition, Sawaya created a 20-foot Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton (comprised of over 80,000 LEGO bricks). Also on display at NYSCI will be the fan favorite Yellow, a life-size sculpture of a man ripping his chest open with thousands of yellow LEGO bricks cascading from the cavity. Yellow has gained pop culture fame appearing on fashion labels, album covers and even in Lady Gaga’s music video G.U.Y. The exhibition also contains a gallery showcasing an innovative, multimedia collection of LEGO brick infused photography produced in tandem with award-winning photographer Dean West.
“The Art of the Brick takes LEGO somewhere you wouldn’t expect and shows you things you have never seen before,” said artist Sawaya. “The goal with this collection of art is to demonstrate the potential of imagination and the power of creativity.”
In addition to Sawaya’s sculptures, The Art of the Brick exhibition at NYSCI also includes an interactive section called “The Science of the Brick.” Museum visitors can try their hand at different LEGO brick building challenges, games and a free play area.
Hands-on interactive activity stations include:
• Art & Architecture – Museum visitors are challenged to use LEGO bricks to recreate famous building, bridges and structures.
• Hidden Hands – Visitors are challenged to build a mystery object inside a covered box, using only their sense of touch.
• Assistive Devices – Visitors build a tool to pick up an object on a post, through a series of various sized windows.
• Describe It – One person builds a simple object out of view and describes the object to another person. Then, the second person tries to build the same object based only on the description.
• Six Bricks – Visitors are challenged to see how many different things they can build using only six LEGO DUPLO bricks.
• LEGO Drag Race – Museum guests can build a LEGO brick car and test it out on ramps of different inclines.
• Tilt Maze – Participants can rearrange straight LEGO “bar” bricks to create a maze for a wooden ball to navigate through on a tilt-table.
• LEGO Music Box – Visitors use a LEGO baseplate with horizontal lines representing different “tracks,” vertical columns representing the eight “beats,” and different colored LEGO bricks as instruments or notes/pitches to create a song. They then put the visual representation of their song under a camera, where simple image processing algorithms turn it into music.
• Free Play – A free play area with bins of LEGO bricks and LEGO Duplo bricks.
The Art of the Brick is open September 28 through January 26. Entry to the exhibition costs $7 per person, plus NYSCI admission. Museum members can enter for free.
After viewing The Art of the Brick, visitors who want to continue to create with LEGO bricks can participate in one of the many LEGO-themed activities and workshops offered by the museum. The museum’s full list of events is available online.
Hi-Res photos and videos are available for media use on request. Please contact Mary Record at firstname.lastname@example.org or 718-595-9123.
About Nathan Sawaya & The Art of the Brick – Former New York City corporate lawyer turned contemporary artist, Nathan Sawaya is the first artist ever to take the LEGO brick into the art world as a medium. Sawaya has earned a top position in the world of contemporary art and has created a new dimension by merging Pop Art and Surrealism in awe-inspiring and groundbreaking ways. Sawaya’s touring exhibition – The Art of the Brick® – has entertained and inspired millions of art lovers and enthusiasts around the world. CNN heralded The Art of the Brick as one of the top ten “must-see exhibits in the world!” Sawaya is an author, speaker and one of the most popular, award-winning contemporary artists of our time. For more information visit www.brickartist.com.
About The New York Hall of Science – The mission of the New York Hall of Science (NYSCI) is to nurture generations of passionate learners, critical thinkers and active citizens through an approach called Design, Make, Play. Design, Make, Play emphasizes open-ended exploration, imaginative learning and personal relevance, resulting in deep engagement and delight in science, technology, engineering and mathematics. NYSCI was founded at the 1964-65 World’s Fair and has evolved into New York’s center for interactive science serving a half million students, teachers and families each year. NYSCI is open Monday – Friday, 9:30 am – 5 pm and weekends, 10 am – 6 pm. General admission is $16 for adults and $13 for children (ages 2-17), college students with valid ID, and seniors (62+). For more information, visit classic.nysci.org or call 718-699-0005. Follow NYSCI on Twitter and Instagram: @nysci, and on Facebook at: facebook.com/nysci.
Mary Record, New York Hall of Science