Nathan Sawaya: Brick Artist ™
Nathan Sawaya is a New York-based artist who creates awe-inspiring works of art out of some of the most unlikely things. His recent global museum exhibitions feature large-scale sculptures using only toy building blocks. LEGO® bricks to be exact. A full-time independent artist, Sawaya accepts commission requests and shows his art in galleries in New York, Miami and Maui.
He’s available to design and build custom creations for private collectors, events, photo shoots and conventions. In addition, he occasionally makes himself available for speaking requests and is the author of two best-selling books.Sawaya was the first artist to ever take LEGO into the art world. His unique sculptures and touring exhibition, THE ART OF THE BRICK, continues to inspire creativity as well as break attendance records around the global.Born in Colville, Washington and raised in Veneta, Oregon, Sawaya’s childhood dreams were always fun. He drew cartoons, wrote stories, perfected magic tricks and also played with LEGO. Sawaya attended NYU. After college he rediscovered LEGO but not as a toy, but rather as a medium.
Today Sawaya has more than 2.5 million colored bricks in his New York and Los Angeles art studios. His work is obsessively and painstakingly crafted and is both beautiful and playful. Sawaya’s ability to transform LEGO bricks into something new, his devotion to scale and color perfection, the way he conceptualizes the action of the subject matter, enables him to elevate an ordinary toy to the status of fine art.
According to journalist Scott Jones,”Sawaya is a surrealist mash-up of forms and artists. Imagine Frank Lloyd Wright crossed with Ray Harryhausen, or Auguste Rodin crossed with Shigeru Miyamoto, and you start to get a sense of where Sawaya is coming from.”
Sawaya’s art form takes shape primarily in 3-dimensional sculptures and oversized portraits. He continues to create daily while accepting commission work from around the world.
The Art of the Brick Museum Exhibit
Sawaya’s art is currently touring museums in a show titled, The Art of the Brick. It’s the first exhibition focusing exclusively on LEGO as an art medium. The creations, constructed from countless individual LEGO pieces, were built from standard bricks beginning as early as 2002. More information on the tour, dates and locations can be found on the Art of the Brick Museum page.
His work has been featured in collections including:
- MASS MoCA, North Adams, MA
- Columbus Museum of Art, Columbus, OH
- New York Public Library, New York, NY
- Spot Gallery, Paris, FR
- Moss Gallery, New York, NY
- Avant Gallery, Miami, FL
- Sullivan Goss Gallery, Santa Barbara, CA
- Nassau Country Museum of Art, Roslyn Harbor, NY
- D’Amour Museum of Fine Arts, Springfield, MA
- Art Museum of South Texas, Corpus Christi, TX
- Flinn Gallery, Greenwich, CT
- Kimball Art Museum, Park City, UT
- American Swedish Museum, Philadelphia, PA
- Time Warner Center, New York, NY
- Mesa contemporary Arts Center, Mesa, AZ
- Central Park, New York, NY
- New Orleans Public Library, New Orleans, LA
- The Art & Culture Center, Hollywood, FL
- Mulvane Art Museum, Topeka, KS
- Lancaster Museum of Art, Lancaster, PA