Monastery of Uclés Altarpiece

The Fernando Núñez Foundation organized the event “Cuenca, Uclés, Vía Láctea” for the feast of St. James the Apostle. It is a music, light and sound show that was projected on the Altarpiece of the Monastery of Uclés and simultaneously on a replica built and installed in the Cathedral of Cuenca.


In order to carry out the event simultaneously in both temples, the EXarchitects team manufactured a scale replica of the original altarpiece of the Uclés Monastery using digital fabrication techniques. This was possible from a 3D mesh from the scanning provided by the LaLAB team.

First, our team reviewed and optimized the model so that it could be manufactured using machining and 3D printing. The altarpiece is divided into 4 main pieces which are the base, lower body, middle body and upper body or semi-dome. The base and the lower body were simplified or reinterpreted according to the content of the projection, and then machined with a 3-axis CNC machine in wood. Then, the middle and upper bodies, were divided into 3 pieces and were machined using a robot arm. The material used for machining with the robot was expanded polystyrene, lined with dm on the back to provide strength and join the bodies together.

In the middle body we can see 6 columns that have also been manufactured by machining with robot independently and then assembled. We can also see the figures of the Apostles, these have been 3D printed with PLA. Finally, all the pieces of this great puzzle were lacquered with special paint to project the video mapping on them.

We share with you images of the finished altarpiece with simple lighting and projections on it:

Here are some images of the manufacturing process:

General information:

Client: LaLAB and Fundación Fernando Núñez
Audiovisuals: Fluge

Data on the manufacture of the replica of the Uclés Monastery Altarpiece:
Direction and coordination: EXarchitects
Fabrication and milling: EXarchitects & 3D Nieto
Lacquering and assembly: OAK Ebanistas
Location: Jamete Arch of the Cathedral of Cuenca and subsequent transfer to the Monastery of Uclés.