The little coloured bricks are more than mere toys, a whole scene is build around them - here are some awesome works of Lego art.
Whilst most of us pack away our beloved bricks by the time we reach adulthood, some designers have carried on their love affair with design toys and have created the most spectacular sculptures that truly deserve the title Lego art. Here, we take a look at the best Lego art from both the likes of Certified Lego Professionals and some amateurs with real flair. It certainly had us reaching for those bricks again!
01. The Simpsons town of Springfield
Everyone loves the Simpsons, but veteran Lego artist Matt De Lanoy clearly loves them more than most. Just a few months after the release of the official Simpsons Lego set, he's recreated the entire town of Springfield in coloured bricks, including the Kwik-E-Mart, Moe's, Krusty Burger, the nuclear power plant and more. This image only shows one corner of his creation - see more on his Flickr page.
02. Warren Elsmore
Professional Lego artist Warren Elsmore broke records in March, with an exhibition of 72 Lego models. Attracting over 50,000 visitors, with 2,000 on the busiest day, the likes of the Olympic Park and St Pancras Station in London and the Forth Bridge were on show. His Las Vegas strip also proved hugely popular.
03. Jin Kei
Korean Lego artist Jin Kei has given life to one of the giant four-legged mammals from Salvador Dali’s painting 'The Elephants'. At 32 inches, the artist added his own steampunk twist with mechanical accessories, making for a seriously impressive piece of Lego art.
[via In Habitat]
04. Back to the Future train
Last month, the Creative Bloq team were extremely excited to learn that Back to the Future Lego was a thing. Our excitement then prompting us to then search for BTTF Lego fan art, which is when we came across this 19th century train by G Russo.
Currently featured on the Lego Cuusoo website, Russo is keen to get his design developed into an actual Lego set. And he's gone all out to try and ensure that happens, adding fine details including two side panels that fold open to reveal an overhead door, some foldout steps, and various controls, levers, pipes, and wheels for controlling the train.
05. Pixel Kiss
The talented team at Brickworkz create the most amazing custom Lego art work. One such example is this piece, modelled based on the Pop Art style of Roy Lichtenstein's Kiss V 1969.
Composed of over 20,000 Lego bricks, the cool mosaic currently resides at legal office of William Ellyson in Richmond, Virginia.
06. Lego aircraft carrier
This Lego aircraft carrier USS Harry Truman has got to be one of the most impressive creations on our list, in terms of size and detail. The 200,000 brick, 4.5m long, 350-pound aircraft carrier comes complete with electrical lights as well as moving elevators and radar dishes.
The epic sculpture, built by German Lego fan Malle Hawking, also includes a half submarine and a mini gunboat on the side.
07. Lego framed rainbow
After discovering the Lego Factory and latest Lego Digital Designer software recently, artist Simon C Page was become hooked on Lego art design. And this Lego framed rainbow is his first creation.
Created out of 3,029 bricks, there are over 200 1x1 pieces of each of the 16 colours used throughout. Page comments on his website: "It has took me over six hours to put together and wasn't easy - stacking nearly 50 1 x 1 piece end to end nearly 50 times across, all the time keeping to a strick colouring pattern."
08. A futuristic Japan
Project 'Build Up Japan' was sponsored and curated by the legendary toy brick makers and encouraged school children to build imaginary structures - with the result of a Japan that they wanted to see.
With a little help from their parents and a few Lego officials, children across Japan were able to create their country the way they wanted it. The total number of Lego bricks used was a jaw-dropping 1.8 million!
09. Life-size LEGO forest
How cool is this? This isn’t a child-sized toy set: it’s actually a life-sized LEGO forest in the Australian Outback! It’s made up of 15 pine trees, and 15 flower sets, all 66 times bigger than their design toys counterpart – making the trees a whopping 4m high.
10. LEGO advent
Last year, the UK's only certified LEGO technician Duncan Titchmarsh built this huge advent calendar sculpture. Made up of approximately 600,000 bricks, the installation was unveiled in central London's Covent Garden shopping area.
Each door was opened at 4pm every day in the lead up to Xmas day. The presents behind each were also cool Lego creations. An awesome way to celebrate the festive season.
11. Sea Monster
Take a trip to Disney World in Florida and you'll find this awesome Lego sea monster, Brickley. The cool character is made out of 170,000 LEGO bricks, stretches a whopping 30 feet and weighs half a ton!
The brilliant sculpture is one of many found in Downtown Disney at the LEGO Imagination centre. Other models include a Transformer, giant models of Woody and Buzz Lightyear and the Seven Dwarves.
12. Sandstone block
The ability to print in 3D has opened up avenues for many design disciplines - and Greg Petchkovsky has utilised 3D printing to create an amazing piece of LEGO art-related sculpture.
Petchkovsky combined 3D scanning, 3D digital modelling, and 3D printing to achieve a dramatic effect. He chose a sandstone block with a chipped off corner, so that the 3D print could fit into the remaining space.
Paul Hetherington - known in the Lego world as BrickBaron - had already given a sneak peek to this incredible creation, by showing off the lower structure full of mermaids, oceans and ships. Little did we know that it would actually play as part of a much larger sculpture featuring the God of the sea.
Poseidon was built for the Vancouver Lego Club's Mythology exhibit at the Surrey Museum; taking place from July until September 15th. The attention to detail is astonishing: we don't know if we'd have the patience to build something as impressive as this! You can see more photos of Poseidon, as well as Paul's other work on his Flickr page.
This stunning sculpture was created by Bram Lambrecht using LSculpt - a program which converts a triangle mesh into an LDraw file. Like the sphere generator, the generated model consists of a surface of 1×1 plates oriented in whichever direction provides the best detail.
We love that Bram has taken the time to create not only the body and branch but the shadow too. It's these details that make certain Lego sculptures stand out from the rest. You can see more of Bram's work on his official website.
15. Biggest ever Mario
Although created in 2009, this huge Mario sculpture still deserves a mention. Crafted by brick layer Dirk Van Haesbroeck, it took him just over two weeks to finalise the plumber. Mario is comprised of 30,000 LEGO bricks with the pedestal containing another 12,000. This video showcases the 160 hours of work in just over a minute.
Once the sculpture was finished, it was auctioned off on eBay in aid of Ronald McDonald, a Dutch organisation that arranges proper housing for relatives of hospitalised children in the vicinity of clinics. It sold for an impressive $5100. You can see more of Dirk's Lego art on his Facebook page.
16. Lego bridge
In October of last year street artist Megx converted a bridge in Wuppertal, Germany into a giant Lego structure using coloured panels that create the illusion of being the underside of Lego bricks. Although the panels aren't actually Lego bricks, this is an impressive piece of artwork that we think would fool anyone!
The bridge itself is part of the Wuppertal Bewegung e.V., an old train line that has been converted to a pedestrian and cycle path. What a lovely thing to witness on your ride to work. You can see more of Megx Lego art on his website.
- Also read: 20 inspirational examples of street art
Despite its short run on television almost ten years ago, fans of Firefly and film Serenity still express an intense love and passion for the Joss Whedon series. One such fan decided to build the ultimate homage to the sci-fi show with a replica of the ship Serenity.
Adrian Drake used around 70,000 Lego pieces and the project took 475 hours over the course of 21 months. The ship itself weighs an incredible 135 pounds due to the intricate details Adrian has included. You can more of Adrian's stunning Lego art on his website.
18. Pop-up book Lego art
What can we say about Nathan? Well, first off he's one of the, if not the biggest Lego artist around. Counting himself as one of the world's certified Lego professionals, when he's not jetting off around the world showcasing his artwork in prestigious galleries, he's at his studio creating the next array of Lego art masterpieces.
Here, the pop-up book is a celebration of Waldo H. Hunt - ''the king of pop-up.'' It's created entirely out of Lego (which is handy for this list) and is based around a poem Nathan wrote himself. You can see the said poem across the pages of the book, which we think is a lovely touch.
See more of Nathan's incredible work at his personal website. Or just go to number 2!
We could compile this entire list with Nathan's creations but we'll treat you to just two. 'Crowd' has been trawling the United States for quite some time thanks to Nathan's popular exhibitions so you may have seen it before.
Inspired by the throngs of people walking the streets of New York, 'Crowd' also gives us a sense of George Orwell's 1984 with its watchful eye. The blending of the Lego colours is a perfect example of how talented Nathan is; combining art and toys has never looked so good.
Both 'Pop-up book' and 'Crowd' are currently on tour as part of Nathan's THE ART OF THE BRICK exhibition. Schedule information can be found on his website.
20. Cool robots
Anyone who can call themselves a 'professional kid' and can make money from building robots (and other such things) out of Lego, definitely deserves a mention. Sean Kenney is another certified Lego art professional and does just that and has been making waves on the sculpture scene for quite some time.
In this video, the short tutorial coincides with the release of his book 'Cool Robots.' He shows you how you too can become a Lego artist (who wouldn't want that?!) with the Lego pieces that you already own. Check out the rest of his work on his website.
21. The Love Boat Lego art
Australian designer Ryan McNaught is another artist who can claim 'Certified Lego Professional' to his C.V - pretty cool huh? The Love Boat is just one of his incredible works and this photo is merely the middle interior! You can see the rest of the pictures, along with his other work on his Flickr stream.
McNaught specialises in interactive models and has even made a Qantas Airbus A380 incorporating LEGO MINDSTORMS technology in the past. It's no wonder he has a stash of awards. You can contact Ryan via his website.
22. The Lego House
That's right, you heard us the first time. This is a house built entirely out of Lego and you can actually live in it! You'll have to watch the video to believe it, as James May walks around the finished product commenting on Lego carpets and striped Lego walls.
The project was started as part of 'James May's Toy Stories' broadcast on BBC2. Over 3.2 million Lego pieces were used to create this 2-storey house, with over 1000 volunteers all lending a hand. Sadly, the house was demolished in September 2009. James May is still searching for his lost Lego cat Fusker.