In 2007, some goons looted a casting of Rodin’s The Thinker (one of many castings that exist of the iconic piece) from the Singer Laren Museum in the Netherlands, intending to sell it as scrap metal. I’m not sure why you’d want to sell a multi-million dollar work of art as scrap metal, but hey, that’s on them.
Though six other works from the museum were destroyed in the looting, The Thinker was recovered, though badly damaged. The museum asked the Belgian 3D printing company Materialise to help them fix it up.
The company made 3D scans of the damaged Thinker statue as well as the original mould kept at the Musee Rodin in Paris. Then, they printed the statue in a Materialise Mammoth, one of the biggest 3D printing machines in the world. The result? Perfect 3D printed pieces for all of the Mr Thinker’s lacerations. Just like new! [i.Materialise via Read Write Web]