LEGOs

Having a bad day in Biglaw?

Did you love Legos as a child? Well, who didn’t? They’re colorful and creativity-triggering. Having your child play with Legos is probably better than handing him an iPad equipped with Angry Birds (although I’ve witnessed firsthand the power of Angry Birds to mollify a misbehaving child, so I don’t judge).

But did you ever think, regarding Legos, that you could turn it into a living? And not just a living, but a successful career as an artist?

Today in career alternatives, we meet a lawyer turned Lego lover. His sculptures have appeared in museums and galleries around the country….

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How many of our readers loved playing with Legos as kids? Everyone? Cool, that was easy. Because, I mean, seriously. Nobody doesn’t like Legos.

Based on that obvious premise, you would think a company accused of infringing Lego’s intellectual property would have done so out of love or admiration for the toys.

Well, you’d be totally wrong. The chief executive of Best-Lock, a Canadian and Hong Kong-based company that Lego has sued for intellectual property violations, has wanted to compete with Legos ever since, as a child, the company allegedly destroyed his innocence.

In newspaper interviews after litigation began, Torsten Geller unveiled some deep-seated psychological s**t that led Lego to unsuccessfully attempt to add him as a defendant for defamation. The international toy building block company lost the attempt, but a federal judge still felt compelled to informally suggest Geller should maybe see a psychologist….

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My worst day as an artist is better than my best day as a lawyer.

Nathan Sawaya, former Winston & Strawn attorney turned LEGO artist, commenting on his decision to leave his lucrative Biglaw career to play with toys. His latest exibition, The Art of the Brick, will be on display from December 2, 2011 – February 20, 2012 at the Morris Museum in New Jersey.

‘Think,’ one of the pieces on display at Agora Gallery.

This past weekend, two of your ATL editors paid a visit to Agora Gallery in Chelsea. We wanted to see for ourselves the LEGO brick sculptures of Nathan Sawaya, the lawyer turned LEGO artist.

As explained in our profile of Sawaya, the NYU Law grad left Winston & Strawn for a $30,000-a-year job as a builder at LEGOLAND. Several years later, Sawaya is now a world-renowned LEGO artist, whose works sell for thousands of dollars.

So, what did we get to set our eyes on? And how did we like it?

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