This astonishing golden temple is one of seven new additions to the Piece of Peace World Tour, opening this week in Singapore. This display of amazing builds features the Haw Pha Bang temple in Laos, built masterfully by Singaporean Eugene Tan. The builder toiled on this labour of love for over 90 hours from start to finish and used an estimated total of 13,000 bricks.
While I admire the exquisite detailing, it’s worth highlighting that the real challenge behind this majestic temple is the adornment of gold, a color that LEGO does not offer a very broad palette of elements to work with. Stay tuned for our coverage of the UNESCO World Heritage Exhibition for more amazing places in the world imagined in LEGO.
Machiya are traditional wooden townhouses found throughout Japan and typified in the historical capital of Kyoto. This LEGO version of a machiya by Dan Blom is a great example of a seemingly simple build that really looks the part. The key architectural details like the barred window, known as mushiko mado [literal translation is ‘insect cage window’] and the wooden lattice façade are accurately represented. These days most roofs are covered with clay tiles called kawara, and Dan has left the LEGO studs exposed to give the impression of neatly arranged, rough tiles.
The addition of some extra little details such as the cart, the various items outside the front of the house and the ancient-looking tree complete the scene perfectly.
Heritage houses are wonderful older styled buildings with a typical façade that can be found dotted around many locations in Malaysia. Vincent Kiew has created a beautiful LEGO heritage house complete with detailed interior. I love the façade with its wooden louvre shutters and architectural decorations above the arched windows. The use of a mix of white and older yellowed white bricks really adds to the ‘antiquated’ appearance. The same slightly worn down appearance is provided by the mix of colours in the main left hand side of the house with light grey, white and the odd sand green brick as an aesthetic colour scheme.
Vincent has created a detailed interior for the house, complete with kitchen, living room, bedroom, study, toilet and more. The build is an accurate representation of a typical house and is structurally sound despite being made of LEGO.
It’s worthwhile taking a closer look at all the fantastic interior details that have been added. Most of the interior decorations and furniture are made of wood or stone with some lovely artistic details.
If you liked Vincent’s heritage house, you may also enjoy his LEGO recreation of Kuala Lumpur’s Chinatown that we featured last month.
While an impressive set, 71040 The Disney Castle disappointed builder Swan Dutchman in the fact that it was only a facade and did not encompass the rest of the castle “in the round”. To fix this, Swan built his own microscale version, if we can call it that, because the finished build is actually rather large. It’s built on top of a 48 x 48 baseplate and contains around 3000 small pieces.
Big numbers aside (and not even mentioning that it took three months to create) this is a brilliant build that is instantly recognisable. There’s a lot of clever techniques, such as gears used in the turrets for stone detail and the use of two different kinds of 2 x 2 round bricks. Make sure you take a few minutes to soak up not only the castle, but the builds around it in the body of water, brick road, and vegetation.
They say a house is not a home without a cat, but despite being a cat-lover I would say that a house is not a home without an awesome home gym and fully equipped kitchen. I would be very happy to move into this eco-friendly sustainable Green House by Swedish builder Sarah. Extending from the rock-face, this house makes full use of the sun’s power with solar panels and lots of windows for light. The central column has a nice colour combination to tone in with the surrounding natural environment.
See more of this green house after the jump
When thinking about LEGO, bright primary colors quickly come to mind. So when someone builds a LEGO creation using only natural earth tones, like Maxim Baybakov has done with his lovely minifig-scale library, the creation almost doesn’t register as LEGO. The effect here is quite stunning. Just remove the minifigures and this wonderfully textured and detailed building looks like a photograph of a real place.
LEGO’s 2015 line of Architecture sets introduced a skyline format which has become quite popular amoung fan builders from Paris to Tokyo. Simon NH takes a brand new approach to creating skylines, building a one-of-a-kind evolution of construction. No matter how much building experience you have, each of these tiny structures features some crazy solutions, like the Colosseum’s walls built from light bluish gray 1×1 tiles with 1/2 circle (aka Stadium tiles).
We’ve featured the marvelous structures of master LEGO architect Rocco Buttliere quite frequently here at The Brothers Brick, from downtown Chicago to his recent 12-foot Golden Gate Bridge. Rocco’s latest LEGO build captures the heart of the sprawling Westminster World Heritage Site in the City of London, centered (or centred, if you prefer) on Westminster Abbey, the Church of St Margaret, and the Palace of Westminster where the UK Parliament meets.
See more of this iconic London location
Chinese city walls were built for defense, to protect towns and cities in China. Part of those walls included towers and gates which typically served as entry points. This particular Gate Tower built by Prince Jiang is astounding in size and amazing in architecture. I’m always in awe of how a structure meant to be a defence mechanism can also be made to look so appealing even in real life structures you see around historic China.
Click to see more
Here is another beautiful build made for the Guilds of Historica by the always amazing John Snyder. His Katoren Monastery was built “just for fun to mess around with the dark blue / white color scheme”. The rock formation is very organic and the flora accents it beautifully. I love the angled cobbled path, patchwork rock walls, and the staging and design of the minifigs.
As well as another angle of the build showcasing the wonderful interiors and cheese slope mosaic walls, John has also included a little back story: “Located on the Eastern outskirts of Katoren, this monastery survived the Kaliphlin civil war better than most. A natural spring was the reason for the monastery’s location, and the spring continues to provide fresh water for all the inhabitants, as well as make the surrounding area very lush compared to much of the Kaliphlin landscape.”
Chris Eyerly has built an excellent model of the Laurent House, a lesser-known work by Frank Lloyd Wright, built in 1951 for Kenneth and Phyllis Laurent. Chris has used some unorthodox techniques to capture the flowing curves of the house, particularly “brick bending”, in which many 1×2 plates are connected to form a wall, then the wall is bent into a curve, taking advantage of the tiny gaps between each piece.
It can be challenging to capture curves with a system based on squares, much less integrate the curves with the square sections without ugly gaps between the bricks, but Chris has done a perfect job here, all while staying true to the original design.
In 1983, UNESCO designated the legendary Peruvian citadel of Machu Picchu as a World Heritage Site. Located in the Sacred Valley, 50 miles northwest of Cusco, the city was constructed around 1450 at the height of the Inca empire and was abandoned just over 100 years later. At time of writing, the LEGO Architecture theme has yet to feature a South American structure or building. This omission prompted Diego Baca to build his own microscale version of this historic site.
Diego has captured all the key features including Huayna Picchu as the mountainous backdrop, the blue of the Urubamba River glistening on the left, and la piedra sagrada [tr. the sacred rock] represented by a single 1×1 round plate sitting on high. Also note the wandering llama in the middle of the site!
Diego has kindly created PDF instructions for this model in the same style as the official LEGO Architecture instructions, with a few pages of photographs, historical information, and step-by-step building plans.