Starting today, at Gallery 22, visitors can stop to see downtown Delaware in a way they’ve never seen it before – illustrated through the use of Lego bricks .
“Downtown: Re-Imagined Brick by Brick,” the latest exhibition on display at the gallery from December 22 to 19, was created by art teacher and Delaware resident Ike Greenwood.
Although he always loved working with Lego and has a huge collection of building blocks, it wasn’t until he saw a full-scale model of the National Mall that he decided to use his collection and his knowledge to build a large-scale model of its own.
“What better thing to use than a city I love?” said Greenwood. “I want it to be recognizable as Delaware.”
The downtown Greenwood model is on both sides of Sandusky Street from Central Avenue to William Street, and it comprises 49 buildings. Greenwood said the entire model consists of 10,968 bricks.
The most difficult building for Greenwood to construct turned out to be the PNC building at 40 N. Sandusky St., he said.
“I had a love-hate relationship with this building early on,” Greenwood added. “With Lego, you are very limited to colors… I blocked it in all orange and I hated it. Then I made a pattern of orange and red brown stripes, (now) the details are there.
Greenwood said he also hid Easter eggs in the downtown model and hopes people like to see the city in miniature form.
“I hope they get a little more love for their city,” he said. “To see it on a small scale and see all the little details. I hope that seeing it they will think it is cute and enjoyable… especially for those who live here and see it every day. Now that I’m walking downtown, I have a much better appreciation for the city center as a whole.
Greenwood said he hopes to expand the model to include both sides of Winter Street in the future.
“I am delighted to understand how to put these bricks together,” he said.
Greenwood said the buildings will be available for sale during the exhibit and that he will also be working on a model of the Palace of the Arts in Delaware.
Greenwood said he will be at the premiere today and hopes to be at the gallery on Friday or Saturday each week the model is on display.
Gallery 22 is located at 22 E. Winter St. in downtown Delaware. The gallery is open from 6 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.
Pictured is a section of Ike Greenwood’s Lego exhibit showing the North Sandusky Street block stretching just south of Old Bag of Nails at East Winter Street in downtown Delaware. Greenwood has said he hopes to build all of Winter Street someday in the future.
Ike Greenwood, art teacher and Delaware resident, sits behind his model of buildings on North Sandusky Street in downtown Delaware.
Glenn Battishill can be reached at 740-413-0903 or on Twitter @BattishillDG.