I recently discovered The Brick Testament website which features Biblical stories illustrated with Legos™. The Bible Review chose the unusual art for the worst Bible art award in 2002 while Stuff chose it as the best combination of toys and God's wrath in 2005.
The Brick Testament made it into Rolling Stone magazine's Hot List 2005 (10/06/05). "It's filthier than Hustler. It's more violent than The Sopranos. It's pretty impressive for an illustrated Bible made entirely of Legos™." Rolling Stone goes on to say that the artist creates "strangely compelling pictures online and occasionally publishes his work in glossy, coffee-table friendly books ---if incest, gang rapes, beheadings, bestiality and wholesale genocide are your idea of parlor chitchat."
The Biblical tableaus are designed in Legos™, then photographed with a digital camera by The Reverend Brendan Powell Smith, the son of an Episcopalian Sunday school teacher. East Bay Express (10/26/05) reports that at age 13, Smith decided to reassess his boyhood superstitions. "I didn't start out with the goal of questioning my religious beliefs, but eventually got around to it... Belief in God just didn't make the cut." About reading the Bible cover-to-cover for the first time while studying philosophy at Boston University, he says, "I must say I was pretty shocked." Smith is now an avowed atheist.
Spin magazine (February 2002) described the Biblical scenes as "alternately childlike, disturbing, and hilarious." Smith is quoted: "If there's an unspoken intention to the site, it's to have those who believe in an all-loving and merciful, family-values-supporting God be confronted with the barbaric, heinous, and grotesque stories from the divinely inspired book their religion is based on. Plus, it's a cool Lego™ project..."
To answer the question, "Is he really a reverend?" the website's reply is: "Most ministers, priests, or other religious clerics would not actually use 'The Reverend' before their own names, for to do so would be presumptuous and rather vain. The Rev. Brendan Powell Smith is not an ordained member of any earthly church, and is widely regarded as being both highly presumptuous and extremely vain."
Smith says he sometimes receives complaints from people upset by his depiction of sex in the Bible. He adds, "No one has ever complained to me about the far more prevalent depictions of violence."
The artist adds ratings to each scene: N=nudity, S=sexual content, V=violence, C=cursing. The Bible Review (8/14/02) says, "Genesis, it seems, is least appropiate for children. Paul's letters come next."
Spin says to ignore the ratings "if you wanna see Lego™ Adam giving it to Lego™ Eve from behind."
Note: click on the "press" link at the top of the The Brick Testament website for more press coverage and the "about" link for more information about the site.
To see other amazing art created from Legos™, go to:
or, search for "Lego art" on the web