LEGO Reimagined Van Gogh’s ‘The Starry Night’ in 2,316 little bricks

In 1941, “LEGO Starry Night” was bought by the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York from a private collector.

In the 81 years since, Vincent van Gogh’s masterpiece has been used as a model for everything from a hit song by Don McLean in 1971 to scarves, umbrellas, and water bottles that are sold in large quantities.

Lego Starry Night
Lego Starry Night

Now LEGO is getting in on the fun by asking fans to make brick versions of the Dutch painter’s brush strokes.

The 2,316-brick set is for adults and will cost $169.99. It was designed by a 25-year-old from Hong Kong named Truman Cheng. He put his idea on the LEGO Ideas platform, which takes fan ideas, puts them to a vote, and then makes them real. A working typewriter, the house from the movie “Home Alone,” and a scene from “Seinfeld” are also good ideas that came from the platform

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The set was made with the Museum of Modern Art in New York, and it has a Van Gogh mini-figure.

Van Gogh was inspired to paint “The Starry Night” by the view from his window at the Monastery of Saint-Paul de Mausole psychiatric hospital in Saint-Rémy, France, where he spent 12 months between 1889 and 1890, the year he died.

Cheng, a Ph.D. student, said that he got his idea from playing with LEGO and noticed that when he put the bricks together randomly, they looked like Van Gogh’s brush strokes.
In a statement posted on LEGO’s website, he said, “It was a good brain teaser to come up with tricks and techniques to capture the look of the original painting.”

The house from “Home Alone” is made out of Lego. “The brushwork in the moon and the swirling cloud goes in many different directions, so there was some creative use of bracket and clip elements.”
Sarah Suzuki, the associate director of MoMA, said in the statement,

“At MoMA, we love the chance to bring art and people together, and we’re thrilled to be a part of a new way for people of all ages to see van Gogh’s work and be inspired to create.”

With 2,000 pieces, LEGO makes a classic typewriter that has moving keys and a carriage.
Federico Begher, the head of global marketing at the toy company, said, “Truman’s design was a masterpiece in and of itself. It showed how many different LEGO elements and techniques could be used to copy van Gogh’s famous painting.”

With the release, LEGO has started a contest where fans can send in their own mini-builds that are based on the night sky. This summer, the winning designs will be part of an installation that will be shown in the lobby of MoMA.

The set will first be sold to MoMA members and LEGO Stary night VIPs on May 25. A week later, it will go on sale to everyone else.

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