Australian Artist Creates Monochromatic Structures Using Secondhand LEGO

Jan van Schaik is a Melbourne-based artist and architect who uses LEGO bricks to create captivating monochromatic structures. His works aim to “express a tension between a universally recognizable children’s toy and the grammar of architectural symbols.”   

Schaik found inspiration for these unique constructions, part of the Lost Tablets series, while observing the remains of the Parthenon. He found that the iterations of this Ancient Greek temple can be tracked in its base despite its decaying condition. His works are crafted in the same vision, bearing the scars of time on them.

Each of Schaik’s pieces is made using secondhand Legos. The plastic bricks, with its discoloration, scratches, and other marks, tell the story of their past owners while being a part of a new object. The structures themselves are often in deteriorating condition, being built with holes, gaps, and crumbling parts. 

Lost Tablets is an ongoing series, although Schaik intends to wrap it up after completing 100 unique structures. The finished pieces, each named after a ship found crew-less and adrift at sea, can be browsed on the project’s official website and social media. They will also be on display at several art galleries in Australia in early 2023, including Melbourne’s Crystal Palace & Courtyard.