This is what Venus is going to rest her arse on - a turned Portland stone base with a huge marble plinth. I can't say that I made either, but the whole ensemble was imagined by me, so I'm going to say it anyway.
Everything that I make for this place looks enormous in the workshop, but runs a high risk of looking like a pimple when it is in place, on site. The two pieces together weigh about a half a ton, but I know that when the arse of venus is atop, they will attain a lightness which belies their actual weight.
Part of the process of making and designing for places of this scale is knowing what scale to make them. The same goes for that 'bell' sign of a few posts ago - in the workshop it is frighteningly large, but hanging up there, it is just about the right size, I think.
Not many people have any reason to guess the weight of large bits of sculpture, but when you have to move a piece which may represent up to a couple of million quid's worth of irreplaceable art, it is a very good idea to have as accurate an estimate as possible. Dropping something like that usually means bankruptcy for most people.
I once moved a 13th century, stone Madonna and Child from the niche it had been in for about 650 years. We called a London auction house to get an idea of what to insure it for, and they said they had no idea, but the sky - it seemed - was the limit, making it impossible to insure. On the drive back, I asked my mate what would happen if I were to drive the lorry into a ditch and destroy it. All he said was, "Don't". I didn't.
Another amazing but confusing fact is how often professional and specialist carriers manage to break things in their care, when all they are supposed to do is move them from A to B safely. I have had so much work from carriers who have knocked noses and fingers off, and are desperate to disguise the fact before their employers find out. Stone is a lot easier than white marble. White marble is next to impossible, because of it's translucency.
Anyway, 'How', I hear you ask, 'is he going to move seamlessly from boring the shit out of us with this post, to the usual entertaining filth that we have come to expect from the old sod?'
Oh all right then, here you are - H.I. doing a very passable impersonation of Michelangelo's David, using a pair of underpants bought (for a friend) at a waterside market in Venice: