Some of Elsmore’s Lego creations including the Arc de Triomphe, St Mark’s Campanile and the Trevi Fountain.
Some of Elsmore’s Lego creations including the Arc de Triomphe, St Mark’s Campanile and the Trevi Fountain.
Angel of the North, Tyne Bridge and a cricket match (all Warren Elsmore).
Angel of the North, Tyne Bridge and a cricket match (all Warren Elsmore).
Early construction stage of National Museum of Scotland model (encased for safety)
Early construction stage of National Museum of Scotland model (encased for safety)
Elsmore at work on section of NMS building model.
Elsmore at work on section of NMS building model.

Build It!, National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh

You can comment on this article, add your comment now

Nestled in a busy corner of the National Museum of Scotland’s famous Grand Gallery is Build It! Part of their 150th anniversary celebrations and in conjunction with the Festival of Architecture 2016, the exhibition is a celebration of the work of local artist Warren Elsmore and his works created from Lego. Kids in Museums’ volunteer Joe Wilson went to check it out.

The works on display vary in scale and feature renowned architecture from the ancient world, such as the Roman Colosseum and the Treasury at Petra, to the modern, including the Empire State building and the Auckland Sky Tower. Smaller works then champion some of the most recognisable sights in the world of design, from the London black taxi to the Venetian gondola, while written exhibition material includes brief but effective biographies of both Lego and the artist himself.

Knowledge that a young Elsmore’s bedroom floor was permanently the site of a vast Lego city may vindicate many a messy young visitor. Additionally, as part of the show, Elsmore and his team will be working every Wednesday and Friday on a huge Lego recreation of the museum’s iconic building.

Exhibited content here is minimal however, as the real focus of the show is children and engaging them creatively. Around 90% of the floor space is dedicated to “maker stations” offering families the chance to take inspiration from Elsmore’s art and come up with their own creations. There is even a display case where completed works can be left for others to admire. This is a particularly nice touch as I can think of few better ways to reward creativity than the ability to say it was displayed in a national museum.

The hands-on interactivity of the exhibition was a visible and audible hit with the busy chatter of youngsters, and parents will be pleased to find a bounty of activities and events planned for the half-term holidays. These range from “Challenge Days” that will test their construction skills through a series of fun architectural tasks, “Mini Mechanics” which will explore the science of pulleys, cogs and wheels using Lego and Meccano, and the “Big Build” which will help engage youngsters with the National Museum of Scotland’s collection by assisting it’s master builders in the Lego reproduction of some of the key objects.

The beauty of Lego as a subject is that it relates to everyone; it is as nostalgic to adults as it is current to their children. There are few people who cannot say at least one sentence of their childhood story is not punctuated by colourful Lego bricks. For every child building fond memories there were adults having just as much fun, and even if it’s not your thing, there are few places better to rest your feet for a while than the airy splendour of the museum’s panoptic Grand Gallery.

Perhaps Build It!’s greatest asset though is in its scope for repeat visits. It is a truly organic exhibition and no two experiences will provide the same results, such is the magic of Lego. Unlike other temporary exhibitions at the National Museum of Scotland, Build It! is free, and families should be encouraged to make the most of this. Above all, the ability to track the progress of Elsmore’s live construction of a Lego National Museum of Scotland building will be fascinating. Having only been open a few days when I visited, only a select number of foundation bricks had been laid down, but the sheer scale of the model promises it will be just as interesting at its various construction stages as it will be awe-inspiring in its completion.

Build It! is on at the National Museum of Scotland until 17 April 2016. Entrance to the exhibition and events are free. For more information: http://www.nms.ac.uk/national-museum-of-scotland/whats-on/build-it/

 

 

Leave a Reply

Please help us reduce spam!

Register Your Event

Full name of Organisation
Organisation Address
Type of Museum
Other (please specify)
How is your organisation funded?
Other (please specify)
Is your Education/Learning Department solely run by volunteers?
Are you signed up to the Kids in Museums Manifesto?
Want to know more about the manifesto?Click here
Arts Council region
Are you an Accredited Museum?
Contact Name and Role
Contact Email
Contact Number
Twitter ID
Facebook Profile
Please tell us about any plans you have so far for Takeover Day
Will your Takeover Day be public facing? (will the public be able to see and take part in the action?)
Number of Participants
Age of Participants
Other (please specify)
Type of Group
Other (please specify)
Will you be working in partnership with another cultural or heritage organisation?
If yes, please specify the name(s) of organisations
Does your Takeover Day link up with any of the following themes or initiatives?
ArtsawardDisability or accessHeritage Lottery Funding – Young RootsWorking with a Youth PanelWorld War 1 Centenary
Date of Event
I would like Kids in Museums to keep me updated about future events and projects.
Yes, please add me to the mailing listNo, don't add me to the mailing list

The information provided in this form will be securely stored by Kids in Museums. We will use it to inform you about other Kids in Museums activities, projects and services and to report to our funders. Your data will not be sold or shared with third parties. If you would like to be removed for our mailing list at any point, please contact [email protected]

×
Register Your Event
Full name of Organisation:
Organisation Address:
Contact Name and Role:
Contact Email:
Contact Number:
Twitter ID:
Facebook Profile:
Please tell us about any plans you have so far for Takeover Day Scotland:
Number of Participants:
Age of Participants:
Type of Group:
e.g. school, youth group, Scouts
Date of Event (if not on Takeover Day Scotland)
×
Register Your Event

Full name of Organisation
Organisation Address
Type of Organisation
Other (please specify)
How is your organisation funded?
Other (please specify)
Are you signed up to the Kids in Museums Manifesto?
Want to know more about the manifesto? Click here
Contact Name and Role
Contact Email
Contact Number
Twitter ID
Facebook Profile
Please tell us about any plans you have so far for Takeover Day
Will your Takeover Day be public facing? (will the public be able to see and take part in the action?)
Are the young participants you are working with fluent Welsh speakers?
Number of Participants
Age of Participants
Other (please specify)
Type of Group
Other (please specify)
Will you be working in partnership with another cultural or heritage organisation?
If yes, please specify the name(s) of organisations
Does your Takeover Day link up with any of these themes or initiatives?
Arts AwardDigital Heritage StationsDisabled/SEN groupsHeritage Lottery Funding – Young RootsUniformed Groups - Brownies / Guides / Scouts / Cubs / BeaversWelsh BaccalaureateWorking with a Youth PanelWorld War 1 Centenary
Date of Event
I would like Kids in Museums to keep me updated about future events and projects.
Yes, please add me to the mailing listNo, don't add me to the mailing list

The information provided in this form will be securely stored by Kids in Museums. We will use it to inform you about other Kids in Museums activities, projects and services and to report to our funders. Your data will not be sold or shared with third parties. If you would like to be removed for our mailing list at any point, please contact [email protected]

×
Register Your Event

Enw llawn y Sefydliad
Cyfeiriad y Sefydliad
Math o Sefydliad
Arall (rhowch y manylion)
Sut mae eich sefydliad yn cael ei ariannu?
Arall (rhowch y manylion)
Ydych chi wedi cofrestru ar gyfer Maniffesto Kids in Museums? Hoffech chi wybod rhagor am y maniffesto? Cliciwch yma
Enw Cyswllt a Rôl
Ebost Cysylltu
Rhif Cysylltu
ID Twitter
Proffil Facebook
Dywedwch wrthym am unrhyw gynlluniau sydd gennych hyd yma ar gyfer y Diwrnod Meddiannu
A fyddwch yn wynebu’r cyhoedd ar eich Diwrnod Meddiannu? (hynny yw, a fydd y cyhoedd yn gallu gweld a chymryd rhan yn y gweithredu?)
A fydd eich Diwrnod Meddiannu’n cynnwys defnyddio’r Gymraeg?
Nifer y Cyfranogwyr
Oed y Cyfranogwyr
Arall (rhowch fanylion)
Math o Grŵp
Arall (rhowch fanylion)
A fyddwch chi’n gweithio mewn partneriaeth â sefydliad diwylliannol neu dreftadaeth arall?
Os bydd, nodwch enw(au) y sefydliadau os gwelwch yn dda
Ydy eich Diwrnod Meddiannu’n cysylltu gydag unrhyw rai o’r themâu neu fentrau nesaf yma?
Bagloriaeth CymruDyfarniad yn y CelfyddydauAnabledd neu fynediadAriannu’r Loteri Treftadaeth – Gwreiddiau IfancGorsaf Treftadaeth DdigidolGweithio gyda Phanel IeuenctidCanmlwyddiant y Rhyfel Byd Cyntaf
Dyddiad y Digwyddiad

×
Order your free resources

Name*


Organisation*


Email address*
Address resources should be sent to*
Number of packs
Type of pack
Number of Posters for your venue
Any Other Comments

×
Order your free resources
Name*
Organisation*
Email address*
Address resources should be sent to*
Number of packs
Number of Posters for your venue
Any Other Comments
×
Order your free resources

Name / Enw*
Organisation / Sefydliad*
Email address / Ebost*
Address resources should be sent to / Y cyfeiriad lle dylid anfon yr adnoddau*
Number of packs / Nifer y pecynnau
Type of pack / Y math o becyn
Number of Posters for your venue / Nifer y posteri i’ch safle
Any Other Comments / Unrhyw sylwadau eraill

×
Archebwch eich adnoddau rhad ac am ddim yma

Name / Enw*
Organisation / Sefydliad*
Email address / Ebost*
Address resources should be sent to / Y cyfeiriad lle dylid anfon yr adnoddau*
Number of packs / Nifer y pecynnau
Type of pack / Y math o becyn
Number of Posters for your venue / Nifer y posteri i’ch safle
Any Other Comments / Unrhyw sylwadau eraill

×