It’s hard to define which LEGO models are sculptural and which are just a regular pile of bricks, but we know a good sculpture when we see one — even if it’s a funny cartoon character and not the Venus de Milo.
Listen up! Here’s something you don’t see every day — a cross-sectional model of the human ear, built from LEGO bricks. The work of South Korean builder Jin Kei, this is a large-scale sculpture with (as far as I can tell) an excellent level of accuracy detail. I’m a particular fan of the shaping of the Inner Ear organs in dark blue, and the rendering of the skull cross section in white with red dots to represent the honeycomb-like structure of bone.
I’d like to see more large-scale medical LEGO sculptures please. Could someone build me a model of a spleen?
When you see a surreal and colourful sculpture such as French builder Pistash‘s “Colors in da head”, it will obviously catch your eye. But something else triggered in the back of my mind when I first saw it. There was a subconscious familiarity that drew me to it. Upon reading his description, I realized what that familiarity was. Pistash says that he was inspired by French artist Moebious — in particular, his Hendrix work — and as a teenager one of my favourite posters I had was Hendrix Voodoo Soup, for which Moebious did the cover art.
The Moebious inspiration notwithstanding, I think it is safe to say that as LEGO builders we can all relate to the feeling of ideas and inspiration pouring out of our minds when we build. It is certainly a more welcome feeling than the alternative…the dreaded builder’s block!
Russian builder Timofey Tkachev has been on a roll lately with some great creations, but now he follows up his two lighthearted creations of a man working out and a builder’s living room with this discomforting yet enchanting sculpture of a blood fountain, shaped as a girl.
The grace of the figure is both complimented and contrasted by the sinewy and visceral texture of its body, which may symbolize how close we really are to our darkest side. It is important to point out the stone base as well, which completes the creation and gives it a fantasy feel, reminding me of the aesthetic of Blizzard’s Diablo games.
At first glance this melting LEGO candle by Jonas Kramm looks like the real thing. The goopy drips of wax cling together perfectly, and the candlestick has the just the right amount of detailing. Nevertheless, I can’t help but wonder if this candle would look better in white – but what else can an Iron Builder do when forced to work with bright green Duplo squiggle bricks?
Finding the right desk lamp can be tricky, but fans of LEGO will love this desk lamp created by Victor. At first look, this may appear to be a functional desk lamp, but actually it’s a cleverly designed lamp made from LEGO bricks. The lampshade is made with the shoulder armour from the Baze Malbus constraction figure, and was actually Victor’s starting point when building the lamp. Details like the little on/off button on the base and the 3mm rigid hose posing as an electrical power cable mean that this lamp is appears to be real.
This week we headed up to our great neighbor to the north to track down Tim Schwalfenberg. Tim lives in Canada, is 21 years old and is currently studying Materials Engineering at his local university. He also likes to publicly smash his LEGO builds too, but more about that later.
TBB: Hi Tim! Can you tell us a little about yourself and your relationship with the Brick?
Tim: Sure! I have found LEGO to be a great creative outlet when I need a break from all my calculus or physics courses. While I’ve been building almost as long as I can remember, it wasn’t until my first year of university that I started to look at LEGO with the intention of making anything beyond the rainbow-warrior spaceships of my earlier years. Through a combination of some inspiring creations I stumbled upon through MOCpages and finding myself with too much free time on my hands, I decided that to try out this LEGO thing more seriously. Thousands of pieces and hundreds of creations later the LEGO hobby has become an incredibly important part of my life. The itch to build has become a constant companion that is easily rewarded by long hours tinkering away on a table-scrap covered table.
Owls are mainly nocturnal, solitary birds of prey who are known for their silent flight. Most birds of prey have eyes on the sides of their heads, but the owl’s forward-facing eyes facilitate their low-light hunting. Shawn Snyder has created a LEGO owl with plenty of attitude and a somewhat impudent glare. This is an owl who knows his position, with those piercing, hooded eyes, sharp talons on show, and wings spread wide in an act of defiance.
That’s a lot of character to be displayed by a brick-built owl – I feel watched.
It’s early, the alarm has just gone off, and you wearily drag yourself out of bed, not exactly rising and shining. I know that I enjoy that first cup of coffee to clear the cobwebs and it seems that Brother Steven enjoys a cup too. What a great combination for fans of LEGO and coffee — a cup of coffee made with bricks. I love the pouring action from the milk carton and the splash into the coffee.
On second thoughts, there is a certain drawback to LEGO coffee… it doesn’t quite hit the mark on taste.
This week we talk with Aran Jitsukawa-Hudson (AKA Cole Blaq) about his art, philosophy and his life. Aran was born in Great Britain and grew up in Germany. He lives in Düsseldorf with his wife and three kids, is a cancer survivor, and attended university as an Art History student. We interviewed him 6 years ago here on The Brothers Brick, but there’s a lot to catch up on since then. He is currently running a Kickstarter campaign to publish an art book based on his Enter the Brick series. Let’s go explore the mind of a builder.
TBB: First of all, could you tell our readers a little bit about yourself? What got you into LEGO and what kept you there?
Aran: My real name is Aran Jitsukawa-Hudson, as some might know. My alter ego as an artist is Cole Blaq, which is a reference to a comic character and an adaption to Hip Hop language.
I am British by origin but mainly grew up in Germany. With my wonderful wife being Japanese, we’re a rich blend of cultures! Now I live in Dusseldorf, Germany, which is located at the river Rhine, north of Cologne.
When we last checked in with Tim Schwalfenberg, he’d just completed his massive LEGO diorama of The Last of Us. While considerably smaller, this crumbling statue of a horse and rider — both their heads knocked off ages ago — is no less atmospheric. Although Tim considers this a small build, it still feels like a monumental sculpture that evokes the glory of a long-gone era. The brown sign also adds an air of mystery — what does it mean? Is this in the distant past or a terrifying future?
Valentine’s Day was yesterday, but we couldn’t pass on highlighting this amazing LEGO portrait of a silhouetted couple built by Letranger Absurde. Look closely, because while those black shapes with smoothly curving edges may look simple, they’re actually a complicated conglomeration of plates and slopes facing all directions. The creation is also much larger than it appears at first glance, standing around two feet tall.
I can only assume that Chris Maddison takes excellent care of his LEGO teeth because these chompers appear quite healthy! Just look at those pearly whites (modified 2×3 pentagonal tiles). Firm-looking rosy gums and not a cavity in sight! (I bet money he even flosses.)
The best part about these LEGO teeth is that they even chatter like the wind-up plastic toy Chris’s design was based on. Check out the video below to see for yourself.