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Universal Call to Holiness Bas Relief, Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception

We were honored to contribute to this project, which received the Marble Institute of America’s Pinnacle Award for “Special Interior Project of the Year.”

Opposite the magnificent high altar in the Basilica rests the end wall bas-relief carving known as The Universal Call to Holiness. This large bas-relief measures 53′ long x 15′ high x 1′ thick. The installed relief sets 19′ off the finished floor. The relief has 47 figures carved in Botticino Classico marble, and the assembled relief consists of 16 pieces, the largest measuring 12′ x 10′.

Rugo Stone designed a stainless steel anchorage system to support the weight of the stone, approximately 85,000 lbs. The project included the supply of the carved marble panels and its special transport from Italy. The logistics of moving these panels from the east entrance through the Narthex and then into the Nave.

Rugo Stone designed and constructed a custom railroad car and track system to move the massive pieces and a 10 ton overhead gantry crane used to lift and lower the panels into their final position. Rugo Stone furnished and installed all the book-matched marble wall panels, radial marble soffits, the solid marble cornices, and the associated unit masonry and miscellaneous steel for a complete scope.

Location: Washington, DC
Completion: 2000
Owner: Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception
Architect: Anthony J. Segreti, AIA
General Contractor: Rugo Stone LLC
4,500 sqft
Services: Design engineer, carve, and install 85,000 lb bas-relief sculpture

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We lend a sophisticated aesthetic and world-class expertise to large scale and special projects. Clients include religious, civic, cultural and educational institutions, public agencies, private developers, major corporations, and individuals.