Ai Weiwei gifts politically charged “Letgo Room” LEGO installation to the National Gallery in Melbourne

Ai Weiwei Gifts Politically Charged “Letgo Room” to the NGV Melbourne
Ai Weiwei at National Gallery of Victoria exhibition Andy Warhol | Ai Weiwei has gifted his major new installation “Letgo Room” 2015 to the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV). The NGV commissioned the work for its Andy Warhol | Ai Weiwei exhibition which opened on December 11 and continues until April 24, 2016.

BlouinArtinfo:

Created using more than two million plastic Lego bricks, the installation comprises twenty portraits Australian activists, advocates and champions of human rights, freedom of speech, freedom of information and freedom of the internet.

Ai established collection points for the Lego bricks around the world earlier in the year, including one at the NGV, after Lego refused to supply him with bricks because the company “cannot approve the use of Legos for political works.”

Portrait subjects include Julian Assange, Geoffrey Robertson QC, Peter Greste, Professor Gillian Triggs, Rosie Batty, The Hon Michael Kirby AC CMG, Archie Roach, Julian Burnside AO QC and Rosalie Kunoth-Monks, among others from a wide range of different fields.

Constructed on the artist’s behalf by a team of almost 100 local volunteers and arts students, the work “attests to Ai’s long-standing commitment to freedom of expression and human rights,” according to the NGV.

Andy Warhol | Ai Weiwei includes more 120 than works by Ai Weiwei and over 200 works by Andy Warhol, exploring the full scope of both artists’ practice. The exhibition is presented in association with The Andy Warhol Museum, Pittsburgh, with the participation of Ai Weiwei Studio.

Artist Profile: Ai Weiwei takes over Alcatraz with Lego carpets and a hippie dragon

 

The big man of Beijing’s new show fills the former prison with a giant rainbow dragon and Lego models of 175 prisoners of conscience, from Nelson Mandela to Edward Snowden. The artist’s bravery and commitment are extraordinary.

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“With Wind”

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“Trace”

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“Yours Truly”

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“Refraction”

Entrance to the psychiatric observation rooms in the Hospital at Alcatraz, site of the exhibition @Large: Ai Weiwei on Alcatraz
“Illumination”

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LEGO builder creates a life-sized statue of anime/Vocaloid character Hatsune Miku

 

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

Kotaku:

Making a life-sized Hatsune Miku statue is not easy. What’s more, it takes time. Lots and lots of time. This, for example, took six months’ worth of work. Hatsune Miku is a virtual idol who also stars in a series of Sega music games.

LEGO builder Chaos Brick documented the construction process. It’s not step by step, or better yet, brick by brick, but the photos are a fascinating look at how the finished piece came together.

 

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

There’s even the gratuitous panty shot. In LEGO. 

LEGO Builder Creates Life-Sized Hatsune Miku Statue

ChaosBrick [Twitter]

 

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LEGO builder creates a life-sized statue of anime/Vocaloid character Hatsune Miku

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Kickass LEGO Transformer Turns Into a Game Boy Advance

 

Kotaku:

 

Kickass LEGO Transformer Turns Into a Game Boy Advance

New York-based LEGO builder Baron von Brunk has a pretty cool and original ongoing series where he builds LEGO consoles with transforming abilities. He made Nintendo 64 and NES Zapper Megatrons, and while we wait for one that can transform into the Nintendo R.O.B., here’s his latest in the form of a Game Boy Advance.

My favorite part of the build is probably the Doom cartridge, renamed to Boom, that can transform into a gun. Check the gallery below and find more pictures on the artist’s site.

 

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Kickass LEGO Transformer Turns Into a Game Boy Advance

Kickass LEGO Transformer Turns Into a Game Boy Advance

Kickass LEGO Transformer Turns Into a Game Boy Advance

Kickass LEGO Transformer Turns Into a Game Boy Advance

Kickass LEGO Transformer Turns Into a Game Boy Advance

Kickass LEGO Transformer Turns Into a Game Boy Advance

Kickass LEGO Transformer Turns Into a Game Boy Advance

Kickass LEGO Transformer Turns Into a Game Boy Advance

 

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Classic Nintendo scenes as LEGO sets

TechnaBob.com:

If you’re a fan of classic 8-bit Nintendo games like Super Mario Bros., and also have a love for LEGO, you might want to vote for these kits I spotted over on LEGO Cuusoo.

classic nes lego 1

Conceived by Cuusoo contributor Zombieattack, these simple sets would let you recreate classic scenes from NES games including Mario, Donkey Kong, Duck Hunt, Balloon Fight,and others using a mix of standard and custom LEGO blocks.

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Each set would produce a small diorama, with LEGO representing both pixels and individual characters and objects from the games. These sets sort of remind me of the dotgraph kits that Namco released a few years back.

classic nes lego 3

If you’d like to see these made into actual LEGO sets you can buy, drop by LEGO Cuusoo and show your support. Personally, I’d pay good money just to have that blockheaded dog and some square ducks.

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Classic Nintendo scenes as LEGO sets

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Amazing LEGO Rapidash Pokémon: Setting Fire to the Bricks

 

Technabob.com

What could be more amazing than a Pokémon whose tail and mane are made of fire? I’m talking about Rapidash of course. Well, since this fiery horse doesn’t really exist, this LEGO version is the best thing ever. It may not be able to run so fast that flames burst from its back and legs, but you can practically see it happening in the image here.

lego rapidash pokemon horse 620x594

This amazing LEGO Pokémon was made by Mike Nieves aka Retinence. The look is just amazing. I would love to see a stop-motion LEGO pokemon movie with Mike’s creations.

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Amazing LEGO Rapidash Pokémon: Setting Fire to the Bricks

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Nintendo’s First Electronic Toy Was Very, Very Cool

 

Nintendo's First Electronic Toy Was Very, Very Cool

We all know Nintendo is a company with a long history. In over 100 years they’ve made everything from playing cards to LEGO sets to video games. But as important as some of those products were (or still are!), few are as important as the Nintendo Companion.

Why? Because it marks Nintendo’s first foray into the world of electronic toys. This humblechildren’s walke-talkie set is the point where the company’s past as a humble toymaker and it’s future as an electronic gaming powerhouse meet.

Nintendo's First Electronic Toy Was Very, Very Cool

The excellent Nintendo history blog Before Mario has a couple of units, and estimates they’re from the mid-1960s. Built in conjunction with Sharp, the package included two handsets, one notable because it’s in a very Famicom shade of maroon-and-gold.

The Nintendo Companion (its full name was technically the Nintendo Transceiver Companion) wasn’t produced in large numbers, making it very rare today. But what a prize if you can get your hands on it.

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Nintendo’s First Electronic Toy Was Very, Very Cool

Nintendo's First Electronic Toy Was Very, Very Cool

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Kaneda’s Bike from anime classic Akira, made from LEGOS

 

Shotaro Kaneda’s red motorcycle has become the unofficial symbol of Katsuhiro Otomo’s cyberpunk masterpiece Akira, beating out its memorable characters or even its visionary plot and themes. Two highly talented LEGO builders going under the name The Arvo Brothers pay tribute to Otomo by constantly working on a LEGO model of the bike.

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The Arvo Brothers have been working on the scale model for more than a decade and are now on their fourth version. Writing about their latest build on HispaBrick Magazine, the brothers describe it as “a stylised model that is not very aggressive, homogeneous, without excesses, but it works as a whole.” Their dedication to this single build led them to create a 200-page book about it.

HispaBrick Magazine writer car_mp summarized the Arvo Brothers’ book as follows: “It isn’t a book about ideas, although in its pages you can find many, nor is it a book about building techniques even though from its pages you can decipher the way these guys build. It isn’t an instruction manual either, even though one is included. It is all of that and more. It is a book about an evolution, the evolution of a model and its builders, about a constant search for perfection to confer physical qualities to a dream that arose from a manga.”

The Arvo Brothers will release a digital copy of their book for free. You can get it from them starting December 14 by contacting them at arvobrothers[at]hotmail.com. They will also make it available on their website, although they didn’t say when. Meanwhile you can read more about The Arvo Brothers and their scale model on issue 18 of HispaBrick Magazine, which is available as a free PDF.

If you think that car_mp’s description of the book is mere hype, read the magazine and you’ll see just how passionate the Arvo Brothers are about their project. For instance, they wax poetic about the beauty of their model’s disproportionately large rear wheel. For better or for worse, these guys are consumed by their obsession.

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Kaneda’s Bike from anime classic Akira, made from LEGOS

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Street Art: Crime-themed Lego mural causes a storm in Johor Bahru (Malaysia)

JoharBahruLegoMural-621x319

A plan to spruce up the streets of the Malaysian border town of Johor Bahru with street art has come unstuck after authorities took exception to a Lego-themed mural which they believe tarnishes the city’s image.

Johor Bahru City Council will remove a mural painted by Lithuanian street artist Ernest Zacharevic following a controversy over one dubbed ‘JB, home of Malaysia’s very own Legoland’, which shows two Lego figurines – a knife-wielding robber lying in wait for a woman carrying a Chanel handbag.

Malaysia’s south has seen a resurgence in street art in recent years, led by artworks in Penang, which have captured the imagination of Malaysians. Street installations by Zacharevic have also appeared in Singapore and Japan this year.

But the Lego artwork portrays a side to the city it would rather keep quiet; Malaysia is also currently grappling with a crime problem following some high profile killings earlier this year. Last month the government stopped providing crime statistics to the UN.

Johor Bahru is the home of Legoland Malaysia and is heavily reliant on its image as an investor-friendly region, although its reputation as a crime capital has dogged it for years, with neighbouring Singapore labelling it as a “cowboy town”.

Zacharevic told local news site Malaysiakini that his public artwork was not meant to be permanent and it was up to the local community to decide what to do with it.

If I react to every criticism I receive, I would have never paint a single painting … I celebrate democracy and embrace pluralism,” he said.

This is how it should be – people publicly, in a civilised manner, discussing what they like and what they don’t like. As an artist I follow my own consciousness and it is up to the rest how they interpret my artwork.”

Democratic Action Party leader Lim Kit Siang said it was ridiculous that the state government had been debating the mural and instead urged them to address the problem of crime rates in the city.

Instead of removing Zachas’ ‘high crime’ mural, it should be allowed to remain to serve as a challenge to all relevant authorities to make JB low-crime and a standing testimony that high crime rate in JB is a “story of the past,” he wrote on his blog.

Zacharevic uploaded a photo of the mural on his Facebook page last week which garnered debate and more than 7,000 ‘Likes’. Local street artists have now added a new figurine of a policeman with handcuffs, presumably as a way to preserve the artwork for a bit longer.

Most Malaysians have been supportive of the artwork, although one critic told Malaysiakini: “It is unbecoming of a good painter to use his God-given talent to showcase something unpleasant about your host when you are a guest.

“There are many beautiful things in Johor Bahru that he can choose to show.”

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Street Art: Crime-themed Lego mural causes a storm in Johor Bahru (Malaysia)