Marble elaboration can be done industrially or it can be made by hand, but nowadays is a mixture of both. Marble handicraft elaboration is more complex, because it requires a unique development, in other words, it requires experience, knowledge and especially artisan creativity. Handicrafts dating from remote centuries BC, proof of that are the Ajanta caves in India which are hand-carved caves into the granite rock. They were made in the second century BC. Another example is the city churches in Lalibela, northern Ethiopia. These churches were made in the sixth century BC.
Marble was used as a technical material for the first time in the Greek architecture in the sixth century, also marble decorative functions are denoted in the Byzantine architecture and in the Christian Syria. In the seventh century, marble was spread through Byzantium in Italy and then they reached their widespread in the Renaissance. In the Baroque period, marble was used primarily as a revetment, for instance Roman Coliseum was built mostly with travertine marble in 70-80 AC. From Egyptian art to sculpture of the Romantic period, marble handicraft was done directly on the stone, for example the Egyptian pyramids were built in the 2600-2800 BC, they durability over the years is due to they were built with various types of limestone. The use of this stone is popular in the exteriors, because they become hardened by atmospheric changes and by the time. Egyptian pyramids limestone were extracted from the Nile valley to Luxor.
The stone reappears in the 60’s, it adopted new technologies and it proposed new formats in technical terms. In the last two decades, there have been three clearly stages in the marble industry which have had a clearly effect in the socio-economic development, especially in Almería, Spain. The first stage takes place along the second half of the eighties, when many of the workshops, which where specialized in funeral work, became in large material suppliers demanded by the construction industry. The second stage corresponds to the huge crisis of the nineties, when the construction activity drastically stopped. The third stage began in 1998, it involves a significant recovery in the construction activities with the consolidation of larger companies due to their products were oriented to the foreign markets.
In summary, the difference between the marble industrial production and marble handicraft production is the artisan, because he makes unique pieces with the expression of his art, even if he uses tech machinery in the process, but this only applies to a lower percentage than 30%. On the other hand, in the marble industrial production, tech equipment is used more than 70%, so it makes a chain process with standard measures. Therefore, marble professionals should have a high experience in order to give art to these pieces.