As a kid, I loved playing with Legos. I was excited when I was able to make a rectangular-shaped house look fairly decent. There is an incredible sculptor named Sean Kenney who puts together absolutely stunning works of art made with Legos. His "Wild Connections" exhibit will be making a stop at the Grand Rapids Public Museum next month.

The exhibit will open on Saturday, November 7th. Produced by Imagine Exhibitions, "Wild Connections" depicts important topics that the New York artist, Sean Kenney, holds dear -- from protecting an animals’ habitat, to planting a garden, or using a bike instead of a car.

The Grand Rapids Public Museum website describes the exhibit this way: "Just as LEGO® pieces interconnect, everything in nature is interconnected in a delicate balance. The narratives, along with the intricate displays, also explore the importance of conservation, the balance of ecosystems, predator/prey relationships, as well as the relationships between humankind and the natural world."

In a recent article in Smithsonian Magazine, Kenney described the toughest part of putting together his sculptures: “One of the biggest challenges is trying to get the softness of [an animal’s] features and the expressiveness of the face right while using what is otherwise a very blocky, low-resolution medium. To me, that’s one of the most fun things to overcome. When you’ve done it, you’ve really done it. You step back and are proud of it.”

If you plan to visit the Grand Rapids Public Museum, tickets must be purchased in advance from their website. "Wild Connection" tickets must be added to your cart in addition to general admission tickets.

Some of the other things that have been put into place to keep visitors safe and healthy include:

  • GRPM staff will be wearing face masks. Visitors are also required to wear them, unless an individual is physically unable to wear one or under the age of 2, due to state regulations
  • The point of sale stations will have plexiglass to maintain social distancing
  • Signage has been added throughout the building to ensure physical distancing is top of mind on your visit
  • High touch point areas and experiences have been removed or augmented with additional cleaning supplies to limit the spread of germs
  • Touch screen and virtual reality experiences will not be available immediately following re-opening
  • Cleaning efforts have been increased in accordance with health department suggestions and regulations
  • The GRPM has installed germ killing ionization filters to their air handling units. The units reduce airborne particles, control any odors and kill pathogens (including bacteria, viruses and mold)
  • We ask that only one party ride the elevator at a time
  • Additional hand sanitizing stations have been installed

The Grand Rapids Public Museum is located at 272 Pearl Street NW in downtown Grand Rapids. They are open Monday-Friday from 9 am to 5 pm, Saturday and Sunday 10 am-5 pm.