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The Art of The Brick Dublin

Art of The BrickNathan Sawaya‘s work has been inspirational to many AFOL’s. He is one of the pioneers in using LEGO bricks as a medium for art. His widely acclaimed, record breaking exhibition The Art of The Brick has visited the Far East, Australia as well as his home city of New York and is now touring Europe.

The first stop on the European tour is Dublin and The Ambassador Theatre. Due to the popular demand of the exhibit the show has been extended to 22nd June before making it’s way to London.

Built with over a million bricks, taking over 4,000 hours to build and comprising of 73 pieces of art, The Art of The Brick has been described as One of CNN’s Top 10 “Must see exhibitions”.

At the entrance to the exhibit, viewers are greeted by “Crowd” inspired by the “throngs of people walking the streets of New York City”. As you advance through the exhibit you can see how the subsequent works have progressed in a much larger scale culminating in “Dinosaur”.

Standing nearly 6m tall and built with over 80,000 bricks Dinosaur took an entire summer to build and was used as the centre piece for Nathan’s first solo exhibition in 2007.

There are some truly beautiful pieces along the journey.The influences of the former corporate lawyer turned LEGO Certified Professional are represented in the mosaics of Andy Warhol, Jimi Hendrix and Rembrandt. The LEGO built reproductions of such famous works of art the Venus de Milo (18,483 bricks) and Augustus (22,300 bricks) show Sawaya’s love for Hellenistic sculptures.

Sawaya is probably best known for his abstract protrayal of the human form. Yellow, being his most iconic piece, shows his subject “opening oneself up to the world”. The piece has had it’s own CUUSOO project and has even been used by Lady Gaga in promotional images.

For more information on The Art of The Brick head over to Nathan Sawaya’s website

To book tickets for the show, visit Tickets are priced €14 for Adults, €12 for Students & OAP’s, €8 for children up to 15 and €34 for a family of four for Mondays to Wednesdays and €17 for Adults, €14 for Students and OAP’s, €9 for children up to 15 and €42 for a family of four the rest of the week.





LEGOLAND Manchester Star Wars Miniland

I had been looking forward to visiting the LEGOLAND Discovery Centre, Manchester (again) since it was announced that there would be a Star Wars themed miniland exhibit. Although based on the much maligned Episode I: The Phantom Menace the mix of Star Wars and LEGO was enough to persuade me to make the long trip to Manchester to see the exhibit for myself!

To be honest I would have to say I was a little disappointed with the overall exhibit. Theed Palace and the pod race scene look great but the Battle of Naboo is disappointing.

Theed Palace looks amazing! The tan and blueish green bricks used to build the towers, rotundas and copulas look fantastic and although there are a lot of areas which have been sculpted from polystyrene or styrofoam and painted to reflect the cliff edges with shrubs and waterfalls, this only adds to re-create the beauty of the capital of Naboo.

The Palace entrance has the six statues of Naboo philosophers with a group of Battle Droids infiltrating the Palace while the forecourt also has a squadron of Battle Droids on the offensive.

The hangar bay re-creates the scene where Anakin takes off in a Naboo Starfighter while a battle between droids and Naboo Guards ensues!

The Pod Race scene is similarly re-created with a mixture of LEGO bricks and sculpted polystyrene on a sand base. Sebulba and Anakin’s pod racers are on a scalectrix type circuit as they fight it out for the Boonta Eve Classic. The course, which has the remnants of other competitors pods dispersed across it, runs around the Mos Espa Grand Arena.

The Mos Espa Grand Arena is as grand as the name suggests. The minifigures used to populate the arena add to the realism of the setting and you even have Jabba The Hutt and his enturage seated in his private box.

The Battle of Naboo is a bit under-whelming. The Battle of Naboo took place on the grassy plains of Naboo where the Gungan Army fought several thousand Battle Droids who were acompanied into battle by 48 MTT’s and 36 ATT’s. The LEGO recreation has two MTT’s and two ATT’s!

Personally I think the designers/creators of this exhibit would have been best staying clear of this sequence from the film as they would never be able to re-create something as imposing as the battle in the allotted area they had to work with. Having done such a wonderful job with the other two pieces which look amazing, the battle looks like a bit of an after thought. I would have much preferred a set from Coruscant like the Jedi Temple or have the Naboo Space Battle with a multitude of Naboo and Trade Federation starships suspended from the ceiling!

Heuston Station to be exhibited at LEGO World

County Kildare native, David Fennell created Dublin’s famous Heuston Station back in August of 2011 and it hasn’t gone un-noticed. LEGO will be exhibiting the piece, which took 10 months to complete and is made up of 10′s of thousands of LEGO bricks, later this month at LEGO World exhibition in Copenhagen.

Check out these amazing photos of David’s work.