The Art of Brick Inspires
Reflections from the Art of Brick Exhibit
The Art of Brick exhibit in Fanual Hall/Boston was magnificent in so many ways. A lego heaven. An exhibit description notes: “Over 1 million colorful Lego pieces were used to create this show. Artist Nathan Sawaya, has an ability to transfrom a common toy into something meaningful, elevating what almost every child has played with into the status of contemporary art.“http://brickartist.com/about/
The Art of Brick exhibit opened with the artist, Nathan Sawaya, welcoming us. Through video, he shares his journey in becoming a lego artist. He highlights his days in law school, years working at a desk and nights playing legos. His story speaks to his need for a creative outlet and his own transformation into becoming a full time artist. http://www.bostonbricks.com/#!plan-a-visit/c1lqq
This exhibit showcased the most magnificent lego constructions. Everything lego…from the Mona Lisa, a Tyrannosaurus Rex…to life size Statues of David and Venus de Milo. Visitors are welcomed with a lego construction of a huge hand holding a small red lego piece. Nathan Sawaya explains, “A lot of my work suggests a figure in transition. it represents the metamorphoses I am experiencing in my own life. My pieces grow out of my fears and accomplishments, as a lawyer and as an artist, as a boy and as a man.” The underlying message of this exhibit was illustrated in the many featured quotes. The message… “Art is everything.”
“Art makes better humans, art is necessary in understanding the world and art makes people happy. Undeniably, art is not optional.” Nathan Sawaya
“Art nurtures the brain. Whether made from clay, paint, wood, or a modern-day toy.” Nathan Sawaya
There was a life-size, lego pencil called “Writer”. The caption read, “Let your big ideas flow. When you let your creativity loose, be it in writing, art, music, or whatever, your ideas take on a life of their own. So take those big ideas and set them free.”
It was here when I started thinking about my own art and metamorphosis as an educator. My own journey with Outdoor Classrooms popped into my head. I reflected on how I often feel like an artist when I am playing in the dirt, exploring plants and possible garden installations. I don’t always set my creative self free. Like Nathan Sawaya, I too feel like I should “working” and sitting at my desk. Even though I find the same joy and creativity when I am gardening and exploring possibilities for outdoor classrooms. I appreicated his advocating for art and nurturing our own creative genius. This core message was my “take away” from this exhibit.
The Art of Brick exhibit reminded me to give myself permission leave my desk and dig in the garden. It inspired me to be creative and let my big ideas flow. My favorite section of the exhibit was the “Hugman” These are huge lego people figures hugging trees. They have been outdoor art installations in various cities throughout the world. They remind us all of the power of embracing our own creative sense of self. The quote reads, “The power of art can transform. Hug someone today, and embrace your own creative sense of self.”
In the end, I found inspiration in The Art of Brick. I see the connections this artist has made through lego, art and an idea. I will be reminded of this experience every time I hesitate leaving my desk to go out and dig in the dirt. I am inspired to transforming our outdoor spaces and inviting children to enter with their creative selves to playfully learn.