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Nathan Sawaya’s The Art of the Brick exhibition @ ArtScience Museum, Marina Bay Sands

Nathan Sawaya’s The Art of the Brick exhibition @ ArtScience Museum, Marina Bay Sands

The previous weekend, I brought my family to visit The Art of the Brick exhibition by New York-based artist, Nathan Sawaya, showcasing his largest collection of 52 large-scale LEGO sculptures at ArtScience Museum, Marina Bay Sands.

One of Nathan Sawaya's most iconic LEGO sculpture

One of Nathan Sawaya’s most iconic LEGO sculpture

Back view

Back view

This is the first time Sawaya’s exhibition is being shown in Southeast Asia and the exhibition will be in Singapore at the ArtScience Museum till 14 April 2013. The exhibition features many of Sawaya’s iconic, though-provoking works, along with new LEGO sculptures created specifically for the exhibition run at ArtScience Museum.

With LEGO blocks as his medium, Sawaya successfully transit the humble toy to become synonymous with intriguing art pieces that most museum goers can relate to. I find him much like the Andy Warhol of current time, but with less eccentricity, more logic.

Nathan Sawaya's self portrait in LEGO bricks

Nathan Sawaya’s self portrait in LEGO bricks

Front and back view

Front and back view

Swimmer

Swimmer

Inspired by a dream Sawaya had of his hands falling off

Inspired by a dream Sawaya had of his hands falling off

Moving on to the next gallery

Moving on to the next gallery

Peace

Peace

Raindrops

Raindrops

Make your own 3D LEGO raindrops

Make your own 3D LEGO raindrops

Gallery featuring many of Sawaya's human form sculptures

Gallery featuring many of Sawaya’s human form sculptures

Various human forms

Various human forms

Interactive wall whereby you can convert your shadow into bricks form

Interactive wall whereby you can convert your shadow into bricks form

Thinking

Thinking

Various human sculptures

Various human sculptures

Piecing together

Piecing together

Deep in thoughts

Deep in thoughts

Portrait of Sawaya's wife, Courtney, made of LEGO bricks

Portrait of Sawaya’s wife, Courtney, made of LEGO bricks

Jimi Hendrix in LEGO bricks

Jimi Hendrix in LEGO bricks

Courtney again, but in yellow

Courtney again, but in yellow

Alfred Hitchcock

Alfred Hitchcock

Jasper Johns

Jasper Johns

The artist

The artist

Isn't this magnificent?

Isn’t this magnificent?

Small and big apple

Small and big apple

A hand holding something small

A hand holding something small

Painting and subjects made of LEGO bricks

Painting and subjects made of LEGO bricks

Sit and take a picture beside a brick man

Sit and take a picture beside a brick man

From pencil and fun, we move to Sawaya's inner world in the next gallery

From pencil and fun, we move to Sawaya’s inner world in the next gallery

Before he became a full-time artist, Sawaya was a successful lawyer and part of the exhibition documents the struggles in his career switch to a world of uncertainty. I am sure aspiring artists facing a similar dilemma in pragmatic Singapore society will be able to draw aspiration from Sawaya’s experience.

Trapped and breaking free

Trapped and breaking free

Sawaya's inner world

Sawaya’s inner world

Red skull

Red skull

Brick man behind a brick wall

Brick man behind a brick wall

Trapped inside a small box

Trapped inside a small box

One of my favourite pieces

One of my favourite pieces

Skull face

Skull face

Close-up of the skull face

Close-up of the skull face

Sawaya’s works are easily accesible to the masses and many would be able to identify with the LEGO bricks since so many of us grow up playing with them!

A dinosaur piece which Sawaya made specially for the kids visiting his exhibition

A dinosaur piece which Sawaya made specially for the kids visiting his exhibition

The full dinosaur

The full dinosaur

A close look at the brick dinosaur

A close look at the brick dinosaur

A LEGO brick version of the ArtScience Museum - a commissioned piece specially for this exhibition

A LEGO brick version of the ArtScience Museum – a commissioned piece specially for this exhibition

From another angle

From another angle

The exhibition is pretty kids and baby friendly. My one-year son had fun at some of the interactive exhibits and the kids’ corner:

Interactive corner at the dinosaur display

Interactive corner at the dinosaur display

Kids Creative Corner

Kids Creative Corner

Asher taking a photo of himself in LEGO form

Asher taking a photo of himself in LEGO form

Asher in LEGO form

Asher in LEGO form

The one-year-old art critic

The one-year-old art critic

Asher checking out the LEGO reflexology path

Asher checking out the LEGO reflexology path

Kids' corner

Kids’ corner

Asher playing with LEGO bricks

Asher playing with LEGO bricks

Gift shop

Gift shop

 Sawaya’s unique artworks have won him the “Most Creative Unusual Artist” award from the Society of Unique Artists. The Unique Art Awards recognise exceptional artists around the world for their unconventional artworks.

Tickets to The Art of the Brick can be purchased on the ArtScience Musuem website and all Marina Bay Sands box offices. For more information on Nathan Sawaya and The Art of the Brick, visit www.brickartist.com.

There are two other exhibitions showing at the ArtScience Museum when we visited. They are Fujians: The Blue Ocean Legacy exhibition and Outside In: A Magnum Photos Showcase. While Rachel and Asher went for a bite at the nearby Pita Pan, followed by shopping at The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, I visited the other two exhibitions.

The Outside In exhibition showing till 17 March 2013 features photos from the renowned photographic co-operative, Magnum Photos, featuring some of the world’s finest photographers.

The exhibition features works by three distinguished photographers, Stuart Franklin, Mark Power and Jacob Aue Sobel, the newest member of Magnum.

Outside In marks the 65th anniversary of Magnum Photos and is the largest collection of Magnum photographs in Singapore, with a total of 143 pieces on display.

Fujian: The Blue Ocean Legacy is an exhibition presented by The Singapore Hokkien Foundation. It is one of the main highlights of the World Fujian Convention (WFC) and the 4th Singapore Hokkien Festival.

Fujian: The Blue Ocean Legacy exhibition

Fujian: The Blue Ocean Legacy exhibition

The exhibition showcases rare artefacts from overseas museums and from local collectors in a modern and contemporary manner. As a Heng Hwa Hokkien myself, I traced my family roots back to Putien in Fujian and find the exhibition an interesting glimpse into the lives of my forefathers and ancestors.

The exhibition showcases 600 pieces of exhibits, including rare artefacts classified as “First Class Cultural Relics” from Quanzhou city (Fujian province, China). Amongst the highlights are Yuan Dynasty stone carvings of two Chinese fairies holding a Christian corss; and a Ming Dynasty porcelain dish with peony and phoenix designs.

There are also some local artefacts on display which can be regarded as Singapore’s national treasures. One of such arefacts is an 1828 land title deed with a signature of Hokkien merchant and philanthropist Tan Tock Seng. The piece of land bought from British East India Company was used to build the Thian Hock Keng Temple. The well-preserved document is believed to be the oldest land title deed ever found in Singapore.

Tickets to both Fujians: The Blue Ocean Legacy exhibition and Outside In: A Magnum Photos Showcase can be purchased on the ArtScience Musuem website and all Marina Bay Sands box offices.

If you are a Singaporean like my family, there is considerable discount on the ticket prices for all the three exhibitions compared to foreigners. Do check out the ArtScience Museum website for the latest update on their exhibition line-ups and promotions. 🙂

About The Author

alvinology

Alvin is a marketer by day and blogger by night. He is a 100% geek who spends too much time surfing the web.

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