If you happen to venture to Washington DC in the coming months, make sure to visit the National Building Museum's exhibition of skyscrapers built of LEGO blocks. LEGO Architecture: Towering Ambition centres on 15 well-known skyscrapers and other impressive buildings recreated by Adam Reed Tucker, and visitors can also have a go at creating their own structures.
American Tucker is a trained architect who, motivated by the 9/11 events, wanted to express his respect for the skyscraper form and chose the medium of the LEGO brick to do it. He is now one of only 11 LEGO-certified Masters in the world - people who are making a living out of their passion for creating with LEGO blocks.
The structures on display include New York's Empire State Building and the world's tallest building Burj Khalifa. The latter towers over Dubai at an awe-inspiring 828m in real life and is no less impressive in the museum environment at 5.3m.
The process for building a LEGO skyscraper starts with examining the photos and renderings of the original buildings and considering design principles such as proportion, scale, form and shadow. Tucker doesn't use computer modelling or even written directions for his work and is known to have built and rebuilt some sections five or six times before being satisfied with the end result. Some of the structures consist of some 450,000 LEGO pieces, which should give a hint of the time and effort put into creating these buildings.
Tucker says that he doesn't view his models 'as literal replicas but rather artistic interpretations that capture the essence of their sculptural form'.
The exhibition of Tucker's work comes to an end on 3 September.