The construction of the gigantic White Rose, and the beautiful Rose Portal

Roseslottet – The Rose Castle – by Eimund and Vebjørn Sand

June 13, 2021, the doors of Roseslottet opened for the first time. The Rose Castle is an art installation and educational project telling about the occupation of Norway.

In the art park, which is a full 75 meters in diameter, the audience will be guided through various sides of the occupation and stories of humanism. Here they will see a number of works of art by world artists Vebjørn and Eimund Sand, including a portal and a 3.5-meter high white rose. 


In the first meeting with the artists, we suggested a process that immediately was accepted. The first task was to give the artists a real picture of what the finished giant rose would look like.

The start was scanning an actual rose on a normal scale and used our tools and expertise to turn this into a digital rose of 4 meters. This was delivered as a full-size 3D visual model. Using VR glasses, the artists could view the digital rose in real size.

VR is very useful before launching production. Changes can be made there and then in cooperation with the customer. This also applied in this case. Sand agreed to adjust the shape of the original rose to ensure a good construction while retaining the realistic expression.

After the digitization process, the job started to find the right materials. Given the size of the rose, this was not easy.

cnc machining the thite rose

The rose should look petrified. In addition, it must withstand weather, wind, and snow load. Very often steel is used in similar projects, but in this case, the expression would not be realistic enough. Eventually, the solution was to use composite,  similar to the material used in advanced boat hulls.

When the design and choice of material had landed, it was ready for production.

After the design was complete, the was cut rose in two parts, the stem and the bell. We used our unique five-axis CNC milling cutter. After the stalk and bell were finished, both molds were covered with fiberglass and polished to a smooth, fine finish.

Eimund and Vebjørn Sand inspecting the white rose at our premises in Torsnes


When you enter the Rose Castle you pass 2 portals that are meant to depict roses and rose petals that are about to wither.

This project also started with 3D scanning and digitization. Vebjørn shaped two small sculptures in model clay, which we scanned to digitally recreate the shape.

Our VR system was used to see the portals both in the right size and in the right environment. Together with the artist, we modified the shape and adapted the size. The portal was scaled down from 5 meters high to just over 4 meters in this process.

cnc machining the rose portal form wood

The Sand brothers had a wish for the portal to be made of glulam. Despite the complicated shape, this was no problem for us to mill in our 5-axis milling machine.  Six solid laminated blocks each weighing 600kg were delivered by Aanesland Factories in Kristiansand, after which we cut out the special shape in the 6 separate blocks. After milling, the parts were assembled and treated with varnish.

The gates now stand 4 meters above the ground in massive blocks of glulam, with a total weight of almost 4 tonnes.

The rose portal at the final destination at the Rose Castle.

Video: SandBOX
Photo: Eker Design

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