The Cult of Lego

IMG_0052The Cult of Lego is a thing ... a cult ... a past time, a cultural phenomenon. But it is also a book called, as you might guess, The Cult of LEGO.

The book is written by John Baichtal, of Make Magazine and Wired GeekDad blog and Joe Meno, the founder of Brick Journal. The publishers describe the book thusly: "The Cult of LEGO® takes you on a thrilling illustrated tour of the LEGO community and its creations. You'll meet LEGO fans from all walks of life, like professional artist Nathan Sawaya, brick filmmaker David Pagano, the enigmatic Ego Leonard, and the many devoted AFOLs (adult fans of LEGO) who spend countless hours building their masterpieces." And that is pretty accurate.

IMG_0057Lego has an interesting history. The company Lego Group is Danish and was founded in 1932, an early on made a variety of toys. "LEGO" comes from Leg godt" which is danish for "Play Well."

The company survived, perhaps even thrived ruing, Nazi occupation of Denmark. They company started making injection molded toys after WW II, and began production of the Lego blocks we are familiar with today in 1947.

IMG_0058We learn from The Cult of LEGO that at present there are about 62 LEGO bricks or parts for every person on the planet earth, though obviously they are rather unevenly distributed. In total there are 2,400 different "elements" (kinds of bricks and such) that have been produced in 53 different colors. I'm not sure if that includes Duplo or not.

Also, there are about 200,000 Youtube Videos that address LEGO. However, if you search for "lego" on Youtube there are over 13 million entries. That exceeds the 9.5 million entries one finds in searching the word "Evolution." (Presumably both search terms find many entries that are not specifically about the building bricks or Darwin's famous theory.)

IMG_0061The book is totally pro-LEGO, almost jingoistically so, but if you are a LEGO cultist, you will not mind. The Cult of LEGO covers all aspects of LEGO cultism, and provides a wide ranging survey of LEGO life, with these chapters:

Chapter 1: The History of LEGO
Chapter 2: Building Again
Chapter 3: Minifig Mania
Chapter 4: (Re)creating Icons
Chapter 5: Building from Imagination
Chapter 6: LEGO Art
Chapter 7: Telling Stories
Chapter 8: Micro/Macro
Chapter 9: Digital Brickage
Chapter 10: LEGO Robotics: Building Smart Models
Chapter 11: Gatherings
Chapter 12: Serious LEGO

I've covered a lot of LEGO related books on this blog. This book is different from all the others in that it is not a "how to" book. Rather, it is a guide to the bigger picture of LEGO world, a coffee table book to place right next to your latest LEGO creation or perhaps, on the coffee table you've made out of LEGOs. In your room made of LEGOs, in your house made of LEGOs, where you live along side various LEGO people you have made.

No other book I've seen says "I welcome our new LEGO overlords" better than this one.


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By Michael Kelsey (not verified) on 08 Apr 2013 #permalink