Lego Greenhouse
by Sebastian Bergne


London Design Festival 2011: This timelapse movie shows how British designer Sebastian Bergne constructed a Lego greenhouse in London’s Covent Garden in one night for the London Design Festival.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

The pitched roof and walls of the hut are made entirely from transparent pieces of the toy brick, allowing it to function like a conventional greenhouse.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

Behind these plastic wall,s vegetables and flowers emerge from a bed of brown Lego blocks.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

The greenhouse will be on display until 25 September as part of the London Design Festival.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

See all our stories about the London Design Festival 2011 here and see more stories about Sebastian Bergne here.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

Here's some more text about the project from Lego:

LEGO ‘Greenhouse’ by Sebastian Bergne Comes to Covent Garden

Exhibiting in North Piazza, Covent Garden, from 15th to 25th September 2011

LEGO commissioned the award-winning designer, Sebastian Bergne, to create a public installation using the iconic bricks, as part of the London Design Festival 2011. Entitled the “LEGO Greenhouse”, this large-scale installation will be on display in the North Piazza, Covent Garden, a world-renowned cultural district, from 15th to 25th September 2011.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

Since its first interlocking brick was launched in 1949, LEGO has become more popular than any other toy in history. LEGO, by its very nature, is all about design and creativity, stimulating imaginations and inspiring the builders of tomorrow. The interlocking principle with its tubes makes it unique and offers unlimited building possibilities. With about 3,900 different elements in the LEGO range, plus 58 different LEGO colours, all LEGO elements are fully compatible and six eight-studded LEGO bricks can be combined in 915 million different ways.

Choosing Covent Garden as the location for this installation was no accident as the area has previously hosted some of the most exciting cultural content in London. From partnerships with Tate Modern and Somerset House to exhibitions from the likes of Sam Taylor Wood and Banksy, the area is firmly on the design trail and has a long history with the London Design Festival.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

Industrial designer, Sebastian Bergne, has run his own design studio in London for 20 years. Having generally designed consumer products including lighting and furniture, Bergne’s LEGO creation uses the iconic bricks to demonstrate the possibilities of LEGO in a public space. Inspiration has been drawn from Covent Garden’s design heritage and cultural history. Bergne has also looked to the design community in London itself, reflecting the overall Festival programme.

The LEGO Greenhouse is a functioning greenhouse built entirely from LEGO. The walls, the floors, even the earth is LEGO. The plants and vegetables growing inside are however, entirely real.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

Standing in Covent Garden in front of the famous covered market, this temporary greenhouse seems out of place yet somehow fitting. Its pitched roof references reflect the architecture that surrounds it, while the plants inside bring nature back to this area once famous for its garden trade.

In daylight, the structure looks very much like an ordinary suburban greenhouse dropped into a new environment. Yet at night, it assumes another character entirely. It is transformed into a magical box, glowing and lit it seems, by the life of the plants it contains.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

Though a temporary installation, the LEGO Greenhouse’s functionality hints at the possible potential of LEGO to bridge the gap between toy and useable construction for the real world.

Sebastian Bergne comments, “It's been a pleasure to be involved with this project for LEGO and Covent Garden. What instinctively appealed to me, was that I would finally have the chance to live out a childhood dream and build something huge and usable out of LEGO.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

“As with the majority of my work, I enjoy taking a material or process and pushing the boundary of what can be done with it. This time we have created an interesting juxtaposition of a natural environment growing in an almost digital, mass-produced LEGO structure, and it makes you look at LEGO in a new way.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

“In my work, I love to make something special from the ordinary, and I hope that's what has happened here. It's an everyday function, made of a material we know, in an ordinary environment, but together they make something extraordinary and I think it is going to be quite magical.”

Bergne has worked closely with the LEGO Build and Technical Teams and Covent Garden to realise the project, with the final design built and installed by Duncan Titmarsh, the UK’s only LEGO Certified Professional.

Lego Greenhouse by Sebastian Bergne

The LEGO installation will be exhibiting in North Piazza, Covent Garden, WC2 (on the corner of James Street) from 15th to 25th September 2011, as part of the London Design Festival 2011. Free admission.

Watch this movie over on Dezeen Screen »

  • tanyatelford

    nice idea of useing lego to build the structure, quite playful and seemingly practical

  • peh

    how does thw roof work.. details, please!

    • Toby

      I am interested in the technical points as well. I'm guessing based on the pictures and video, it is a hinge style joint with a long pin. Maybe some sort of flap at the top.

      Is it draft proof? This is very important for a greenhouse no?

    • Victor

      it's architecture made by designer…the roof doesn't work

  • Johan

    quite a boring structure indeed.
    this is not design, its marketing.

    • Meadows

      I agree, Its all about the marketing thesedays the actual product often pales into insignificance.

      There are many examples of this on Dezeen, designers using 'gimmicks' and publicity stunts to push a new product and profile.

      Its very much like the music industry, i'm dreading the boybands of design.

  • alex

    That's nothing, I built a lego Crystal Palace when I was about 8 years old.

  • as someone involved in encouraging people to grow their own fruit and vegetables, I want to point out (though I'm sure we all already know), that this promotional stunt for LEGO has no value whatsover in terms food growing nor is it a clever idea.

    So few of the 'designs' featured in Dezeen have any purpose, just stylistic frippery. Come on Dezeen up your game and show us some good meaningful design which brings real value into this world.

    There that's that said – carry on..

  • LOW

    James May would love this

  • I don't see a door…

  • elizabeth

    love the idea, but yes, more details on how it actually functions. as far as i know plants can't actually grow from brown, danish, cube-like toy components…

    • so and so

      As many others have said, it's non-functional; it's simply for aesthetics as a Lego promotional stunt.

  • bob

    It's a playful, 10 day installation made out of lego – perhaps not intended as a serious challenge to the traditional greenhouse. Unless the photographer has been 'walled in' for the duration like an anchorite, perhaps also we can assume there is a door (and who knows, maybe some real earth beneath the lego 'earth'!!). Personally, I can survive without seeing drawings of the drainage / eaves details etc. Enjoy the Festival.

  • Insipid Idiocrasy

    Lego…it's what plants crave!!!!

  • MIL

    I think it's adorable… all the haters please leave the room…

    • deeznts

      when you're trained as a designer, or architect, you have to deal with critiques of your work. the "haters" are critiquing the design project… pointing out that you can stage things to look great in a photo, but in reality its quite possibly a bad greenhouse. The designer holding a basket of peaches in front of the greenhouse to small to even house a peach tree is lame, it makes no sense.

  • Amazing, that the plants are grown in Lego too. Now that's synergy.

    • jojo

      or they have legos as mulch over potted plants, since it was assembled in a few hours… also, check the definition of synergy

  • tcparry

    I found the video to be pretty sad. A van pulls up, the walls are ready made, a few LEDs are thrown in and there you have it.
    If we saw Bergne himself building the house one brick at a time, we'd might then feel that some care and attention went into the 'design'.

  • Damon

    I'm not eating tomatoes grown in plastic…