A 10-year-old autistic boy named Brynjar Karl Bigisson has successfully built the world’s largest Lego replica of the Titanic ever. At about 26 feet long and five feet tall, the model is constructed from 60,000 bricks and based entirely on plans he worked out with his grandfather, an engineer. Bigisson’s boat took him 11 months to build (with a little help from both his mother and grandfather). According to the boy, if his mother “had not supported my dream it would never have been a reality.”
Bigisson was inspired to build the model after visiting the Legoland theme park in Denmark. The 10-year-old was in awe of all of the huge structures modeled after famous landmarks and transportation vehicles. Still, his obsession with the Titanic stems from a fishing trip that he had previously taken with his grandfather.
For the autistic boy, the attention and support have come with a vital self-esteem boost.
“Although I’m still autistic and will always be, I have trained myself to be ‘as normal as possible,” Bigisson told workers from the Titanic Pigeon Forge, a Tennessee attraction that will host the model for the foreseeable future. “Whatever normal means. I was totally unable to communicate when I started the project and now I’m standing on stage and giving interviews. It has given me confidence. When I started the building process I had a person helping me in school in every step that I took, but today, I’m studying without any support.”
Bigisson added that his grades have gone up since he started working on the ship and that his classmates now consider him more of a peer.