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Toys Idle

Man Repairs Crumbling Walls With Legos 106

Lanxon writes "German-born artist Jan Vormann, 27, has spent the past three years traveling the world repairing crumbling walls and monuments with Lego, reports Wired. His "Dispatchwork" began in 2007 in the small village of Bocchignano, Italy, as part of the contemporary art festival 20 Eventi. Developing the work in situ, he became intrigued by the makeshift repairs that had been made to the crumbling walls. The approach favored function over appearance, reminding Vormann of the haphazard Lego designs created by children."


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Man Repairs Crumbling Walls With Legos

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  • dupe?? (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
  • That's pretty cool.
  • /pedantic (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    It's supposed to be LEGO, you insensitive clod!
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by ChinggisK ( 1133009 )
      Oh just stfu, that argument is getting so damn old.
      • Re:/pedantic (Score:5, Informative)

        by Sovetskysoyuz ( 1832938 ) on Tuesday July 13, 2010 @01:00PM (#32889498)
        It's actually a SUPER SRS Trademark issue, to the point that the LEGO Group highlights it on their website:
        http://www.lego.com/eng/info/fairplay.asp [lego.com]

        Proper Use of the LEGO Trademark on a Web Site
        If the LEGO trademark is used at all, it should always be used as an adjective, not as a noun. For example, say "MODELS BUILT OF LEGO BRICKS". Never say "MODELS BUILT OF LEGOs".Also, the trademark should appear in the same typeface as the surrounding text and should not be isolated or set apart from the surrounding text. In other words, the trademarks should not be emphasized or highlighted. Finally, the LEGO trademark should always appear with a ® symbol each time it is used.

        • The reason for this, no doubt, is that they're trying to prevent "LEGO" from becoming a generic term for little plastic bricks, like how XEROX came to mean "copy" and lost most of its trademark protection.

          Some people don't seem to realize that instructions from a company about how you should refer to it and in what style they want you to advertise their trademark protection are NOT ENFORCED BY LAW. Consider them as requests from a flea shouting at the top of its lungs.

    • by mjwx ( 966435 )
      Is there anything pasta sauce cannot do.
  • Hmmm (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Monkeedude1212 ( 1560403 ) on Tuesday July 13, 2010 @12:03PM (#32888598) Journal

    I'm not sure if I'd want him repairing monuments with lego blocks. It's like to trying to restore the ceiling of Notre Dame with finger paints.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Sorry to be a slashdot corrector geek, but you're most likely thinking of the Sistine Chapel...

      • Yes. Damnit. I knew I wasn't right but after a good 10 minutes of solid thinking I couldn't come up with the actual name.

        • Yes. Damnit. I knew I wasn't right but after a good 10 minutes of solid thinking I couldn't come up with the actual name.

          10 minutes of thinking when the original post was only 6 minutes old? I'd think your ability to see into the future would come with a higher level of accuracy.

          • I asked a nearby person. It was 5 minutes of two people thinking, so 10 minutes in man-hours.

          • by mitgib ( 1156957 )
            Vinny Gambini: Is it possible the 2 defendants...
            [looks at judge]
            Vinny Gambini: went into the Sac-O-Suds, picked 22 specific items off of the shelf, had the clerk take the money, make change, then leave. Then 2 different men, drive up...
            [Seeing Mr. Tipton shake his head no]
            Vinny Gambini: Don't shake your head I'm not finished yet. Wait until you hear the whole thing you can understand what it is that I'm askin'. Then, two different men drive up in a similar looking car, do into the store, shoot the cler
  • He's favoring appearance over usefulness, because his patches are not useful at all. They provide no structural integrity. And besides, they might just fall out when the building crumbles even more.

    Also, someone should have linked to his main site [dispatchwork.info] instead relying on 'sticky' linked article, trying to keep you at wired.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by oldhack ( 1037484 )
      They say it's art. Did you expect something useful?
    • by slyrat ( 1143997 )
      Well, having done some work with legos to make them more sound structurally, it can work. Essentially if you use pvc pipe glue to melt the plastic of the pieces as you are building it you get a very strong plastic structure. I'm not saying it is anything to rely on like actual building materials, but it can easily hold a lot of weight.
      • I have no doubt it is strong enough for small repairs or non-load-bearing walls, but it is not water-permeable. So any moisture in the wall will pool up behind the plastic and errode the remaining mortar and/or bricks.
      • There's no glue. From the artist [telegraph.co.uk]:

        "At first I thought it would be a complicated procedure to fit the pieces," he said.

        "But as it turned out, the bigger plastic pieces were compatible with the smaller ones, and the Lego held itself in place without any glue whatsoever."

        But despite their sturdy construction, the artworks-cum-repairs aren't meant to last forever.

        "I tried to apply some glue, but, on the dusty patina of the stone, it would not stick," he said.

        "So I decided to just put them up like this, aware of the fact of erosion and the influence of weather.

        "I like the aspect of temporariness that comes into play."

    • by aedan ( 196243 )

      You can build a whole house with Lego if you want to.

      http://www.topgear.com/uk/photos/james-may-lego [topgear.com]

    • by binkzz ( 779594 )

      He's favoring appearance over usefulness.

      Did you see the designs? They are just random colour lego blocks put together. If anything, it makes the repaired item look worse.

    • by VJ42 ( 860241 ) *

      He's favoring appearance over usefulness,

      Have you heard of this thing called art? Because that's the purpose of the "repairs", not structural integrity.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Aside from the debate over whether the Lego bricks are more sturdy than stone of unknown composition: Which one is cheaper? Lego bricks are pretty damned expensive! LOL

  • This is an excellent example of what I am always saying: with lego(s), you are only limited by your imagination.

    Why stop at making planes and gas stations when you could use them for many other things? Such as cd/dvd racks, cell phone holder, computer cases etc.

    Sometimes, as some will undoubtedly say, it's not what could you do with them but why would you right? If I was to see a corner of damaged wall filled in with lego I would be "that's awesome!" It's also beautiful and breaks up the monotony of g
  • Colors (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Dan East ( 318230 ) on Tuesday July 13, 2010 @12:41PM (#32889166) Journal

    I can see the artist's intention in using bright, random colored logos to say "Look everyone - these are legos!". But I think it would have been vastly cooler (and more "artistic" - and much more difficult) to have matched the color and geometric pattern of the structure he was repairing (extending the mortar joints, etc.).

    • Agree on both points. Though using Legos for anything this size gets pretty expensive I'd think.

      Maybe he should make custom bricks shaped like big Legos.

      • by Threni ( 635302 )

        He didn't use Lego in the first place. He used Megablocks or some other shitty poundshop alternative. Lego doesn't look anything like that.

  • TFA states that he's worked with volunteers from "three to 40 years". Who the hell works with three years? Who the hell volunteers?

    Ah, yes,I forgot, this is LEGO we're talking about.
  • I wonder if he can repair my constituency' side wall?


  • *sigh* Legos, sheeps, fishs...

    Lego bricks. They're Lego bricks. It's a derivative of "leg godt" in Dutch, which means "play well" (source [wikipedia.org]), and a mass noun, not a count noun. How hard can it be to use the correct name for a product?


    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by M8e ( 1008767 )


      LEGO comes from Denmark and "leg godt" is danish.

      • by M8e ( 1008767 )

        And is legos really bricks? Only a few of them brick shaped, and none of them are made of ceramics. They are either called blocks or pieces in the scandinavian languages.

        "A brick is a block of ceramic material used in masonry construction, usually laid using various kinds of mortar." source [wikipedia.org]

        "Legoklods er et stykke legetøj produceret af LEGO siden 1949 efter engelsk forbillede." source [wikipedia.org]

    • I agree with you with regards to the plural, however it's written as "LEGO", as that's their trademark, the name of the company is "The LEGO Group".

    • by mcvos ( 645701 )

      It's a derivative of "leg godt" in Dutch, which means "play well"

      Danish. I thought the fad of Americans confusing Dutch with Danish had finally disappeared. How hard can it be to use the correct name for a language?

  • old news (Score:2, Interesting)

    by MorbidBBQ ( 1453553 )
    It looks like he puked rainbow colored bricks into the walls. Any self respecting lego maniac would have color coded it to match the existing materials. And common; "...The approach favored function over appearance..." How are these walls more functional? Did he build secret compartments into them? Is there something going on beneath the surface with lego mindstorms and underpants gnomes?

    Parting thoughts: How does he secure the legos? Glue? Does he cut the lego pieces, or chisel away the wall to pro
    • by Macrat ( 638047 )

      How are these walls more functional? Did he build secret compartments into them? Is there something going on beneath the surface with lego mindstorms and underpants gnomes?

      How do you think the gov't listens to your conversations?

      • How do you think the gov't listens to your conversations?

        So Eavesdropping is underpants gnomes' phase 2? Genius!

  • by damn_registrars ( 1103043 ) <damn.registrars@gmail.com> on Tuesday July 13, 2010 @01:05PM (#32889566) Homepage Journal
    James May built an entire house out of Lego [google.com]. For some reason, he was unsuccessful in selling it [google.com], even after living in it overnight.
    • "he was unsuccessful in selling it [google.com], even after living in it overnight."

      not exactly correct, TFA says it was built on a private vineyard (Denbies Wine Estate) with the understanding that Legoland was going to pay to have it moved. When they found out how much it would cost to move they decided they didn't want it and it was torn down. Article does not say if it was up for sale to anyone other than Legoland.
  • He comes up on http://www.thereifixedit.com/ [thereifixedit.com] every now and then and always gives me a good chuckle.

  • I think I just saw this guy in Laussanne! http://imgur.com/x9fXD [imgur.com] But then again those look like megabloks....
  • Using Pink (Score:2, Funny)

    by BraksDad ( 963908 )
    All in all, its just a-nother brick in the wall...

Statistics are no substitute for judgement. -- Henry Clay