10 Country: Can't let go his LEGOs - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

10 Country: Can't let go his LEGOs

LEGO artist Garrett Barati LEGO artist Garrett Barati

July 22, 2004

Tifton-  Some use clay and some use stone-- just about anything to express their creativity.

If a difference between a man and a boy is how he organizes his toys, then Garrett Barati remains a boy at 30. "Have an idea. I want to share that idea with others. What's the best way for me to do it?"

He can't fail with forty-thousand Lego pieces to use, plus a love affair built out of necessity. As a kid, he wanted space toys, but didn't get them. He wanted other toys like transformers, but didn't get those either. His parents gave him Legos instead, and he had to create them.

Now, decades later, he has become an artist who uses the popular toy in his creative projects where he concentrates on details. "They make people remember things and it tells a story," he said.

He creates a town, the centerpiece of his show, a happy town safe for a little girl to ride, with a real main street with stores and cars.

"The car is so cool, neato." Six year-old Tyler Donald immediately saw the finer elements, the details in Garrett's creations. "Rat, white rat."

"It reminds him there's a world under the depot," said the artist. With life above, creating a worker who enjoys his job at the train depot. Garrett wants viewers, like Tyler, to forget about the Lego pieces and see a story that can include drama. "He's going to walk the plank."

Someone having a bad day on the pirate ship. "I'm sailing the sea."

A place where imagination sails through the minds of kids of all ages, where Lego pieces become more than plastic parts. "Bye, bye; Had a great time."

The Lego exhibit continues through Saturday from one to six at the Tifton Museum of Arts and Heritage.

posted at 5:10PM by dave.miller@walb.com