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Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry Displays Lego Architecture in a Bold New Way

by Rick Anderson

Since Legos were first produced in the mid-20th century, the colorful interlocking bricks have entertained generations of children around the world. Yet, for many, the fascination with the plastic toy quickly faded as they grew older. For architect Adam Tucker, 44, however, the allure not only still exists, but an exhibition is now surveying his Lego-made structures. Organized by Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry, “ Brick by Brick ,” running through February 2017, showcases more than a dozen of Tucker’s bold creations. On display are a 60-foot-long model of the Golden Gate Bridge, a replica of the International Space Station, and Dubai’s towering Burj Khalifa, among other architectural feats. “I wanted to tell the history of architecture in an intriguing way,” says Tucker. “That meant showing the breadth of engineering from as early as the pyramids all the way to as recent as Freedom Tower—3000 B.C. to 2015, and everything in between.”

The five-foot-tall version of Disney World’s Cinderella’s Castle took Tucker approximately 230 hours to build, using a total of 36,000 Lego bricks.

Tucker’s version of Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater took 130 hours to complete; the five-foot-long structure includes more than 21,000 pieces.

Standing ten feet tall is the Lego version of New York’s One World Trade Center , which required 25,500 bricks and 45 hours of work.

Dubai’s Burj Khalifa is currently the world’s tallest building, soaring 2,722 feet in the sky. At 12 feet, the Lego replica of the skyscraper is also Tucker’s tallest model. It took Adam 60 hours and 16,500 bricks to finish.

The 60-foot-long Golden Gate Bridge is the “biggest and most complicated piece” in the exhibition, says Tucker. The iconic San Francisco landmark took 260 hours and 64,500 bricks to complete.

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