Lego Burj Khalifa is centrepiece of travelling show

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A recreation of Dubai’s Burj Khalifa made from Lego is one of the highlights of a show travelling across the USA.

It features 10 of the world’s most famous buildings created from 200,000 bricks and they are all the work of Dan Parker, 52.

Organised by the Norton Museum of Art in Florida, the traveling show’s structures also include the Chrysler Building and Flatiron in New York, Taipei 101 in Taiwan and the Seattle Space Needle.

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The exhibition called “Block by Block” also includes an area where visitors can create their own architecture.

Parker is an in-demand Lego artist who  creates large and complex constructions for private and corporate clients — and charges thousands of dollars to do so.

He explained how his unusual job arose.

“You know the kids who get into music or sports? I wasn’t either one of those,” he said.

“I was the tinkerer, the builder, the sit-in-my-room kid who built with TinkerToys, Lincoln Logs, Erector set or Lego. If I didn’t have that, I was building houses out of cards or using my brother’s football cards — much to his chagrin.

“I would get my hands on my dad’s plumbing parts or lumber. I just loved building things. It was the mechanical aptitude, the love of conceptualizing and then building.

I quit playing Lego at the age of 10. I got back into it 20 years later when I turned 30. In between, it was the crazier teenage projects that led to carpentry, cars, mechanics, building furniture. I customised a minipickup and rebuilt a motorcycle. Then I went into the Army and worked on helicopters.

“The Lego sets were quite a lot more sophisticated when I got back into it. I was in engineering school. I was looking for a serious hobby. Whatever I choose I was going to take it to the infinite limit. So when I got into Lego, the choice was already made. There was no turning back. It became full time within a couple of years.”

 

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