Brick by brick, Chicago-based LEGO artist Rocco Buttliere built a tiny LEGO replica of the world’s smallest country: Vatican City.
It’s not the first large-scale LEGO re-creation of St. Peter’s (a Pennsylvania priest built a larger-scaled half-million piece LEGO St. Peter’s ahead of the 2015 U.S. Papal Visit). Buttliere may be the first, however, to build the entire city-state entirely from LEGO.
It took him more than 500 hours over 70 days to dream, design and create the model. Assembling the tiny Vatican City took another 300-plus hours over 28 days.
Buttliere’s 1-to-650 scale replica of Vatican City, revered as the center of the Catholic Church and for its influential architecture, is built from more than 67,000 LEGO parts, with some 1,300 unique individual pieces.
Piecing together history
The sprawling landscape, which features many aspects of the pilgrimage city, is roughly 24.5 square feet (4.3 feet by 5.6 ft or 1.3 meters by 1.7 meters) of LEGO, and could fit on a standard ping pong table.
Buttliere said the incredible heritage of the Vatican City inspired him to create the entire country out of LEGO. Though the Vatican wasn’t his first religious build (he built Paris’s Notre Dame the day after the devastating 2018 fire), it’s the first time he had ever built an entire country.
Read more at Aleteia