Making le Brun's MARO is a challenge for Lapicida

Producing a sculpture by Christopher le Brun, painter, sculptor, printmaker and 26th President of the Royal Academy, was one of the greatest technical challenges stone specialist Lapicida has faced at its Harrogate workshops.

Called MARO and made in Greek Nestos marble supported on a central steel structure, the wing-shaped sculpture stands 5m high and weighs 2.5tonnes.

Producing it took 25 days of sculpting on Lapicida’s Breton Contour Five CNC shaping mill and then a further six weeks of hand finishing by two of the company’s craftsmen.

But there were months of work before the final piece was produced. Christopher le Brun first sculpted a 1:10 scale maquette in plaster and wax, which was recorded by Lapicida’s ScanTech 3D scanner.

These files were used to create first a 1:5 scale sample to check the manufacturing and then several 1:1 samples to perfect the detailing to Christopher Le Brun’s specifications.

Finally, the five sections which make up the piece could be produced, with hand finishing to bring it to life.

MARO was commissioned to occupy a commanding position at Chatsworth House as part of Sotheby’s prestigious selling exhibition ‘Beyond Limits’ that finishes on 26 October.