Tag Archives: real estate arts

If He Builds It, They Will Come


I recently stopped by the new exhibit “The Art of The Brick” at Discovery Times Square. It spotlights the works of world-renowned artist Nathan Sawaya, who uses Lego bricks as his only medium. Growing up, I also loved playing with these plastic toys, but Nathan takes his passion for them to a whole new level.

A few of the brick builder’s more notable, large-scale replicas on display right now include the Mona Lisa, American Gothic, The Scream, the Parthenon, and the Statue of David. Also featured are several of his unique 2D and 3D sculptures – some of them made from more than 80,000 pieces.

My love for Legos as a boy is what drew me to this show, but the size and detail of Nathan’s work are what make me want to go back. I highly recommend this exhibit to anyone who considers themselves a big kid.


Nathan Sawaya is a graduate from NYU Law School, and worked as attorney until becoming a full-time Lego artist in 2004. He’s considered one of the best Lego builders in the world by The Lego Group, and is the only person ever to be recognized as both a Lego Master Builder and a Lego Certified Professional.

For more information about the exhibit visit: www.discoverytsx.com/exhibitions/art-of-the-brick

For more information about the artist visit: www.brickartist.com


– Brian Keeler, Graphic Designer

Destination: Paradise

I recently had the chance to visit the big island of Hawai’i. Though the beaches, beautiful weather, clean blue water, breathtaking hills, and volcano were all once-in-a-lifetime experiences, I personally enjoyed our stop at a local coffeehouse on the side of a mountain the most.

It was a small wooden shack with an open-air patio looking directly out onto the island stretching below, and the deep, blue Pacific Ocean farther away. As a lover of coffee and coffeehouses in general, I was excited to try the local Kona coffee, but wasn’t expecting the sweeping views when I walked out onto the patio where locals were enjoying their diner-style breakfast.

Sometimes even the simplest construction can elevate you to a new level — I believe one of the first things I said when I stepped outside was “I feel like I’m in heaven!”


– Lecia Bushak, Account Manager

A “Do Touch” Display


Robin Rhode is an artist who’s managed to turn his bullied past into a liberating experience for kids. Growing up in Johannesburg during the apartheid, he was hazed by upperclassmen to draw pictures on the bathroom walls. Roughly 30 years later, Rhode is now sketching similar works – at will – for a good cause. Partnering with New York-based nonprofit Time In – a program that connects kids to the arts, the South African native recently invited 37 South Bronx first-graders to interact with his wall drawings in a Lower East Side gallery.

Essentially turning the space into a giant coloring book, Rhode allowed  the students to shade the walls with life-sized crayons. Working in teams of two, the kids joyfully did what no gallery space or household ever encourages.


– Brittany Phillip, Office Manager

A Highlight on Fifth Avenue

REA recently completed a barricade for 693 Fifth Avenue, located in the heart of New York City’s busiest retail avenue.  This is one of multiple projects REA is working on for Thor Equities, a leader in urban real estate development with a focus on retail and mixed-use buildings.

693 Fifth Avenue is comprised of seven floors of retail and two floors of office space, totaling 44,500 square feet.  The building is currently getting a “facelift” with a modernized facade.

The purpose of the 3-story barricade was to grab attention and help Thor find a perfect retail partner for the space.  REA Creative Director Irasema explained that the creative process involved developing a design that was unique compared to most retail barricades — so the design team chose bold text and an eye-catching image.  An emphasis on luxury fashion was also part of the equation, to convey the elegance of Fifth Avenue retail.  REA sets a standard in selling retail space by capitalizing on this luxury retail aspect and pushing a bolder look.

The area welcomes up to 11,000 daily pedestrians to pass the 50 feet of frontage. Visit the 693 Fifth Avenue website for more information.

Cosmic Quilt – NYC Design Week 2012

The Principals is an industrial design studio based in Greenpoint, Brooklyn and they’ve come up with an interesting project that will be exhibited at the International Contemporary Furniture Fair (ICFF) May 19-21.

“Cosmic Quilt” will challenge the design community with questions about interactive environments, including these from ArchDaily: “What would it be like if the environment we inhabit responded to our present in an active way? What if we shift the scale of the way in which our devices operate to the way our buildings function?”

The project is on Kickstarter, so check it out!

Tipping my Fedora to the Mad Men of Old.

Here’s a re-post from our REA Approved Blog! We thought it’d be worth it to share it here too:

4/6 – It’s hard to escape the frenzy of the new season of Mad Men. The captivating ads are plastered everywhere; the talk around the water cooler about the future of Don Draper is plentiful.  Not to mention retailers like Banana Republic are jumping on the band wagon by showcasing Mad Men inspired fashions in their windows. I have to say, I love it all. The visual style is breathtaking and inspiring and seems to be showing up on my radar everywhere I go.

A few weeks ago I attended a field trip with my son Andrew to the New York Transit Museum in Brooklyn, which ended up being another unexpected time warp back to the 1960′s. The tour of the old subway cars was interesting in itself, but when I looked up to see pristine ads from the period, I was in heaven.  From the 2012 Madmen to those of the 1960′s: I say thank you. You have left an undeniable mark on the advertising business, and a visual style to be cherished, studied and re-examined. -M.G.

Magazine Cover Designs for Inspiration…