Aphrodite Marble


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Discovered in Alaska in 1994, this extraordinary marble has no known equivalent worldwide.  It was given the name Aphrodite, after the Greek goddess of love, because of its soft, creamy pink colors and its fossil patterns which at times suggest valentine hearts.  Aphrodite marble is currently being used for fine sculpture, table tops, vessels of all kinds, and as tiles for interior design.



There are six color varieties of Aphrodite.   Some have fossils.   Some are bare of fossils.  All may have gold, yellow, or brown stylolites running through.    

Aphrodite with fossils

  1. Aphrodite Aphrodite -  This is the classic Aphrodite, a blend of creams and pinks, with red, green and yellow sea-shell fossils.  

  2. Golden Aphrodite -  Warm yellows and golds, with red and green accents, and swirling clouds of grey stromatolite fossils.

  3. Royal Aphrodite -  Burgundy red sea-shell fossils in a soft lavender-gray or bluish matrix, with gold and green accents. 

Note on colors in fossils:   Fossilized seashells are fairly common on the planet. Ninety-nine percent are white, black, or some shade in between.  The fossils in Aphrodite Marble are red, yellow and green.  Nothing has been seen from any other place in the world - in fossil and mineral shows, in marble shows, in stone exhibitions, in museums - like it. 

Bare Aphrodite

  1. Creamy Pink.  Soft colored inclusions.  An occasional fossil, usually a snail. Beautiful color.

  2. Red Stripe.  Cream to pink, with red banding.   The bands are seldom continuous.  Instead, they are off-set here and there, a physical proof of past earth movements. This off-setting adds both visual and geologic interest. 

  3. Bare Royal.  Lavender/grey or bluish with creams, golds, reds, and pinks - all very pastel.

Note on Bare Aphrodite:  Every piece is different.  Typically, one variety melds into another.  Some are quite solid in color but most have some patterning.  The stylolites can an attractive addition.  The stylolites are ancient fault fractures, which are now "healed" or glued by a naturally occurring calcite cement.   Some of these ancient fractures are quite wide, filled by both a red (hematite colored) water-deposited calcite and chunks of the original stone (breccia).   Where occurring, these brecciated fracture fillings add even more color and pattern to the stone. 

Some of the Bare might be called "topographic" Aphrodite because, in polished table tops, its undulating patterns can suggest mountains and other landforms while its stylolites look like river systems. We often hear: "it looks just like a map."  


With its clam and snail fossils, Aphrodite Aphrodite and Royal Aphrodite are excellent for any carved form suggesting the sea.  Mermaids are perfect.  These varieties also make beautiful vessels, big and small.  Sculptors seeking less patterned stone may prefer one of the Bare varieties.  All varieties are good for free forms.  

Aphrodite marble is easily worked.  It takes a fine polish.  However, there are things the sculptor should bear in mind.  First, it has a mind of its own as to how it wants to break.  Therefore, Aphrodite is best worked by grinding, not chipping.  Second, while it has not been blasted during extraction, occasional natural fractures (blame plate tectonics) may require gluing. Check by the water test.  Third, in the fossiliferious varieties, the large clam fossils sometimes have a green in-filling that tends to be softer that the surrounding clam shell.  Sculptors should take care in those areas to prevent dipping. 

"Aphrodite marble...a great carve," JoAnne Duby.

"Love that stone, " Norm Reddick



To see photos of raw stone for sale and close-ups of the different varieties of Aphrodite, go to Aphrodite Photo Gallery

To see photos of Aphrodite in fine art sculpture, go to Sculpture.

Click on Functional Art  to see Aphrodite table tops, decorator pieces, bowls, etc.  

Aphrodite outdoor benches, fountains, and zen pools may be seen by clicking Garden Art.

To learn more about its paleontology and see close-up photos of fossils within Aphrodite, go to Fossils from Alaska.


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