Expect colour and detail at this new LEGO exhibition on in the Museum of Sydney with the subject matter being towering structures of Australia and Asia, some of which are being built and some of which have been around for decades.
Being a fan, I had to go take a look at these iconic architectural masterpieces made from the toy building blocks that most of us grew up with. There are around 15 towers that have been replicated by Ryan McNaught, who is one of only 12 certified LEGO professionals worldwide. Some of the towers stand over 3 metres tall.
Australia's towers include Sydney Tower (formerly known as Centrepoint Tower and the centre piece of the room), Eureka Tower in Melbourne's Southbank area, Q1 Tower on the Gold Coast, Infinity Tower in Brisbane and Central Park Tower in Perth. The Towers of Tomorrow are represented by the buildings going up in Barangaroo on the edge of Darling Harbour and include a hotel, commercial and residential towers.
These buildings are all unique, especially the Eureka Tower, which I saw on my trip down south earlier in the year. We got to experience The Edge, which is a cube that moves in and out of the main 88 floor tower and allows you to look down to the ground below. Only for those not afraid of heights.
Left: the original; Right: the LEGO replica of the Eureka Tower
On to Asia and you can see the Petronas Towers of Malaysia, Taipei 101, the Tokyo Skytree, the International Commerce Tower of Hong Kong and the fabulous Marina Bay Sands Hotel of Singapore with its three towers and the amazing Infinity pool that spreads across the top and joins the towers.
From left: Petronas Towers, Taipei 101 & Tokyo Skytree
Marina Bay Sands Hotel replica complete with pool atop
The Tower of Tomorrow in the Asian landscape is the Shanghai Tower, which pioneers new ways of living. This will be China's tallest building and the second tallest building in the world. Construction started back in 2008. It is set to open in 2015. The tower comprises 9 cylindrical buildings atop one another that twist as they rise. Enclosed in a glass facade, there are indoor zones that include gardens, restaurants and cafes, and retail space. There is a whopping 106 elevators to whisk you around. Green elements are incorporated through its sustainable design. The double-layered insulating glass facade reduces the need for air conditioning, reduces wind loads and supplementary electricity is generated by wind turbines near the top of the tower. Twenty five per cent less construction materials were needed as compared with similar buildings of the same height. You can understand why construction has taken several years.
Shanghai Tower - the next generation of super high rises
Some great towers represented here and cardboard panels along with information on the walls gives you facts and figures. A screen on the wall shows a special film made for the exhibition with creator Ryan explaining the models, how they were built and various tricks of the trade. Children can also make their own towers as well with the 200,000 loose LEGO bricks at their fingertips in the 'creating platform' benches. Some interesting creations below.
Furthermore, a Snap and Share to Win competition involves you taking a photo of yourself and your masterpiece at the exhibition and sharing it via social media with #SLMtowers to be in the running to win a workshop with Ryan McNaught for you and five of your friends.