It hurts so much, we can’t imagine anyone wanting to step on a Lego block. Ouch! So putting the toys on a nature path might be asking for trouble.

Well, Lego of your preconceived notions, because we’ll see how these building blocks are blending in with South Florida nature.

Nature’s on full display at Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden in Coral Gables … but look closely. Some things aren’t what they seem.

Nannette Zapata, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden: “The new exhibit here at Fairchild is called Nature Connects, and it’s an incredibly fun, whimsical and yet true-to-life experience filled with Lego bricks.”

Nearly a half million plastic blocks created Fairchild’s newest addition.

Nannette Zapata: “The Lego bricks are actual Lego bricks, like, the ones we all love.”

Sean Kenney’s the brains behind Nature Connects. He uses Legos like a painter uses a paintbrush.

Sean Kenney, artist, Nature Connects: “Basically, I get to play with Lego toys all day long. I am an artist. I have my own art studio. I don’t work for the Lego company, but I just buy all my Lego sets, I mix up the pieces, and I make whatever I want.”

This art is a different type of cubism. So how does he go from blocks to a bird?

Sean Kenney: (presses thumbs) “I just do this.”

Sean has over a dozen hand-built sculptures in the garden. They’re different shapes and sizes, and all have to do with nature.

Sean Kenney: “They are set up all around the garden, so that as you explore the facility, you sort of stumble across them, and they’re really installed in ways that kind of uses the outdoors.”

Nannette Zapata: “As you go through the garden, you are going to see a teeny tiny little bunny rabbit, and then you’re going to see incredible amazonica pool lilies out on the lakes, and those are about 5 feet in diameter.”

There’s a spider that’s not so itsy bitsy, and a gardener with a wheelbarrow so real, Fairchild put mulch in it.

All of the art is made to look like the real deal.

Sean Kenney: “There is a sculpture of a peacock which is about 6 feet across, and I built every single feather in the peacock’s tail.”

Chekeshia Kane, guest: “Far away, it looks like a real peacock, but when you get on it, you can see they’re Lego blocks, and you can see each one and each color.”

The statues are all glued together, but they are still Legos, so there’s only one rule to remember: look but don’t touch.

Nannette Zapata: “We really that hope our guests will be mindful and enjoy the sculpture from a safe distance.”

Andre Hibbert, guest: “I thought they were absolutely amazing. It was always fun to stumble on different ones.”

Nature Connects will be in town through August.

FOR MORE INFO:
Nature Connects
Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden
10901 Old Cutler Road
Coral Gables, FL 33156
305-667-1651
fairchildgarden.org

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