Building peace piece by piece
Eight local builders will be contributing Lego brick replicas to the Piece of Peace exhibition, which runs from July 27 to Sept 3
Her first experience with the famous bricks was at the age of two, when her father bought her a Lego universal building set.
"Throughout my entire childhood, my school project models were built using Lego bricks instead of the paper that other students used," said Ms Xylvie Wong, 34.
She is one of eight local builders contributing Lego brick replicas for the Piece of Peace exhibition, to be held from July 27 to Sept 3 at the Fort Canning Arts Centre.
It took a challenge to build Stormtroopers from surplus bricks for Ms Wong to rediscover her talent in building Lego models.
While working on the Building A LovingSG project in conjunction with the National Day Parade in 2012, Ms Wong used unused bricks to build a Stormtrooper.
"I told the other builders I could make one and I did it, and they challenged me to build another five," said Ms Wong.
"I managed to do it using different brick assortments and I thought to myself, 'Hey you know what? I can do it.'"
That moment sparked a major change in her life.
Ms Wong went on to become a full-time Lego designer after leaving her job in the communications industry, setting up her own studio and workshop.
The Piece of Peace exhibition will feature 43 Unesco World Heritage Sites from 34 countries.
"Through showcasing world heritage, we want to promote peace, and we hope that art, fun and education can be integrated," said Mr Vicente Tai, 50, executive committee secretariat director of the exhibition.
THIRD OVERSEAS HOST
The exhibition was first launched in Japan in 2003, making numerous runs across the country before its first overseas showcase in 2013.
Singapore is the third overseas country to host the exhibition, after Hong Kong and Taiwan.
To commemorate Asean's 50th anniversary, the eight local builders will contribute seven new replicas of Asean's heritage sites.
Ms Wong is working on a replica of the Wat Sorasak, a temple in Thailand's Sukhothai Historical Park.
"I am halfway through and my model stands at about 7,000 pieces at the moment," said Ms Wong.
"It will definitely exceed 10,000."
The largest commercial Lego set, a replica of India's Taj Mahal, contains 5,922 pieces.
"Lego is a good tool to promote peace, it is a brand that is recognised universally by the young and old. Once they see it, they start to put the pieces together and it is amazing," said Mr Tai.
Tickets for the exhibition can be purchased at www.apactix.com/events/detail/piece-of-peace-world-tour-singapore-2017.