“Legomandala” combines the Tibetan Buddhist tradition of creating and ritualistically dismantling ornate sand mandalas with the contemporary medium of LEGO. A meticulous work of art, it is taken apart just after completion by a group of adults and children invited to transform it into their own creation.
Please see (http://vimeo.com/19932607)
for a timelapse video of the first large Legomandala I completed with some LEGO I had on loan last year. It was an experiment and it worked! Now I need a collection of LEGO dedicated to this work to bring more Legomandalas to the public at large.
Using LEGO, a contemporary toy and a plaything of wealthy nations, in an artistic, political and social context has proved a powerful way of communicating with people today. The LEGO makes accessible to people who might otherwise be unconcerned with spiritual, philosophical or political issues, uncommonly profound concepts in an environment focused on one thing: collaborative change.
The deconstruction of the piece represents the acceptance of material impermanence; calling us to live more presently and to value all life in its precious fragile reality. It is also a statement as to the insanity of valuing material goods over the good of other living beings. This is an ancient Tibetan Buddhist message and has helped the Tibetan people resist the Chinese occupation of their country peacefully and for decades. Their cause is no longer in “fashion” but it is still very much alive and as relevant to the world’s crises as ever.
The reconstruction of the LEGO represents the importance of imaginative co-creation and joy in transformative work. When participants are invited to dismantle this “sacred” universe and encouraged to make it their own, they are being called to play an active role in to co-creation of our world. The LEGO represents the building blocks of our universe and how when we are involved in transformation and re-creation collaboratively and joyfully – we are at our best in the world.
It is both a spiritual, political and social piece. The beauty of the mandala, letting it go and participating as a group in creating the new - is an excellent medium for raising awareness. Not only is a Legomandala a profound agent for social impact, it is also fun.
I am currently involved in a number of awesome projects. Another one of note is a street art initiative involving children's drawings, The Monster Project.
Funded by New York City, NY (May 2012)