The Art of the Brick®
The Art of the Brick is the first major museum exhibition to focus exclusively on the use of LEGO® bricks as an art medium and artist Nathan Sawaya has taken it to new heights. Record-shattering crowds have flocked to see the groundbreaking art displays since its debut in April 2007, and the Oshkosh Public Museum is very excited to host this extraordinary, yet fun exhibition from February 28 to June 14, 2015.
Nathan Sawaya, an acclaimed New York-based artist, was the first artist to ever take LEGO into the art world by creating awe-inspiring large-scale sculptures and portraits with only the use of these iconic toy building bricks. Sawaya's art form takes shape primarily in 3-dimensional sculptures and oversized portraits.
The high-demand for Sawaya's artwork at museums and galleries around the globe resulted in the creation of the exhibition The Art of the Brick. Sawaya has an amazing ability to transform the bricks into something both beautiful and playful with his devotion to scale and color perfection. The way he conceptualizes the action of the subject matter enables him to elevate an ordinary toy to the status of fine art.
The centerpiece of Sawaya's collection of sculptures, as well as arguably his most famous piece of artwork, is entitled Yellow, a LEGO torso of a man ripping open his chest while yellow plastic bricks cascade out of the open chest cavity. Sawaya has made a name for himself by creating out of LEGO exacting replicas of the human form in various states of emotion, including anger, love, depression and joy.
"I use LEGO bricks as my medium because I enjoy seeing people's reactions to artwork created from something with which they are familiar. Everyone can relate to it since it is a toy that many children have at home. I want to elevate this simple plaything to a place that it has never been before. The distinct lines. As so often in life, it is a matter of perspective. Up close, the shape of the brick is distinctive. But from a distance, those right angles and distinct lines change to curves," Sawaya said.
The Art of the Brick has inspired creativity and led to record breaking attendance in museums around the world. Now visitors will have the opportunity to experience this one-of-a-kind exhibition at the Oshkosh Public Museum.
About the Artist
Nathan Sawaya was born in Colville, Washington and raised in Veneta, Oregon. He attended New York University. Sawaya lives and works between his two studios located in New York City and Los Angeles.
Since his first solo exhibition, Sawaya's artwork has grabbed the attention of art critics and pop culture novices alike. His artwork has been shown in major art institutions throughout the world, and held in the collection of both prominent private and public collections.
Sawaya was the first contemporary artist to ever take LEGO® into the art world as a medium. His work is obsessively and painstakingly crafted and is both beautiful and playful. Sawaya's ability to transform LEGO bricks into something new, his devotion to scale and color perfection, the way he conceptualizes the action of the subject matter, enables him to elevate an ordinary toy to the status of fine art. His unique sculptures and renowned touring exhibition, THE ART OF THE BRICK®, continues to inspire creativity as well as break attendance records globally.
Nathan Sawaya is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, recognizing his artwork and cultural achievements. In 2014, with the belief that "art is not optional," Sawaya founded The Art Revolution Foundation, for the purpose of making art a priority in our schools and our homes. He has been a speaker at Google Zeitgeist, TEDx, Yahoo! and at the Clinton Library.
"Sawaya is a surrealist mash-up of forms and artists. Imagine Frank Lloyd Wright crossed with Ray Harryhausen, or Auguste Rodin crossed with Shigeru Miyamoto, and you start to get a sense of where Sawaya is coming from." - Journalist, Scott Jones.