November 27, 2022

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Nature POP! at the Zoo — The “perfect union” amongst art, science and mother nature – SaportaReport

4 min read

When having a stroll by Zoo Atlanta this summer months, site visitors will see some animals that weren’t there just before. But unlike their furry and feathered neighbors, these animals are crafted from tens of countless numbers of LEGO bricks. Which is correct, your favorite toy from childhood has come to lifestyle.

Featuring 40 sculptures of animals and character scenes crafted completely from LEGO bricks, Nature POP! highlights the intersection of nature, artwork and humankind.

Artist Sean Kenney (Image courtesy of Zoo Atlanta)

The exhibition, produced by artist Sean Kenney and manufactured by Consider Exhibitions, built its debut at the Zoo on May possibly 13. Kenney is an award-successful artist specializing in LEGO sculptures for over 15 several years.

The pop-art sculptures depict a broad assortment of animals, using vibrant, daring hues that helps make the sculptures stand out from the surrounding environmentally friendly and brown tones of the Zoo. Kenney — who is also regarded as “LEGO’s most effective customer” — used a overall of 800,000 items for the exhibition. 

The dodo bird went extinct close to 1681. (Photograph by Hannah E. Jones)

The displays show incredible depth, with the levels of blocks resembling a topographic map. Every colour is picked deliberately and retains great importance — a blue polar bear symbolizing glaciers and the decline of their habitat the pink pet dog symbolizing the animal’s playfulness a dodo chicken crafted from the hues of a sunset, serving as a metaphor for the extinction of the species. 

In this exhibition, Kenney regards artwork and science as working together fairly than independently. (Photograph by Hannah E. Jones)

The LEGO pieces — all fitting collectively to produce some thing much larger — represents the thought that almost everything on Earth is interconnected. The displays also spotlight the intricate relationships in mother nature, like how animals interact with each individual other and their atmosphere and how human beings influence these fragile ecosystems.

This overarching goal is driven property by accompanying indicators that crack down the message guiding each individual piece, analyzing the subject from the standpoint of a scientist and an artist. This subtle addition engages the viewer and encourages them to think about the further which means of the exhibition — nature appreciation and conservation.

Jennifer Smith, vice president of Strategic Partnerships and Initiatives at the Zoo, describes the show as “the great union” of artwork, science and mother nature.

She included that the workforce was drawn to Kenney’s unconventional operate for the reason that artwork is another avenue to have interaction people in environmentalism.

“The capability to have messages access new audiences sometimes needs some resourceful thinking and telling stories in distinctive approaches. Individuals discover factors in different ways individuals receive messages differently,” Smith said. “It’s a minor bit non-classic when you consider of a Zoo, but [the exhibition] even now connects to our mission and connects to what we do. Definitely, it’s about telling the tale in unique approaches.” 

“The Gardeners” reminds viewers of our obligation to secure the atmosphere. (Photograph by Hannah E. Jones)

This notion is mirrored in “Gardeners” — the only display depicting human beings. The piece depicts an grownup and child watering a plant. The plant was crafted in blue LEGO bricks, symbolizing the worth of thoroughly clean h2o and safeguarding the Earth’s waterways. 

This scene also signifies a training instant for the young generations, highlighting the importance of appreciation and stewardship of the atmosphere.

Whilst the sculptures are crafted with LEGO items, a common childhood toy, this isn’t a project that could be very easily replicated on a rainy afternoon. These pieces just take a large amount of time and dedication from Kenney and his crew. 

A at the rear of the scenes appear at the woodpecker display screen. The team expended 124 several hours setting up the statue created of 32,650 LEGO bricks. (Photo courtesy of Zoo Atlanta)

For illustration, the dodo hen display was crafted with 29,750 bricks, having 76 hrs to assemble. The heaviest piece is the blue polar bear, weighing about 600 lbs with 12,450 parts and taking 389 hours to build.

For those influenced by Kenney’s pop-art sculptures, the Zoo encourages folks to submit an entry in the Develop Your Finest problem. From now until eventually July 15, any one can submit their possess LEGO sculpture that depicts an animal or scene from the Zoo, or your creativeness, for the likelihood to gain a a person-12 months family members membership to the Zoo.

Ultimately, the Zoo Atlanta workforce hopes that the exhibition inspires folks to turn into champions of the environment while also taking pleasure in the pleasurable, spunky artwork.

“There are messages connected to conservation that persons can appear away with, which will ideally inspire conservation action,” Smith mentioned. “And it is art. It’s attention-grabbing mainly because it is created from these a medium which is available to most people. It could encourage men and women in a ton of approaches, regardless of whether it’s conservation action or mastering how to engineer some thing like that. Whether or not you search at [the displays] and just think they are lovely, or if you consider one thing absent from it, there’s worth in that.”

Simply click below for additional facts on the Zoo’s new Nature POP! exhibition.

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