In 2016 a Berlin-based artist claimed to have snuck a 3D scanner into the Neues Museum and successfully scanned the famous bust of Nefertiti - which essentially meant he had ‘stolen’ the bust without having even touched it.

This high-resolution scan of the bust captured every single feature right down to the damaged ear to the perfectly symmetrical face of Queen Nefertiti.

This digital ‘theft’ is a scary thought. What if someone was able to do this to The Mona Lisa by da Vinci, The Statue of David by Michelangelo or The Thinker by August Rodin?

With technology always evolving it may be possible to scan these masterpieces with sophisticated technology and then 3D-print them, effectively copying the original and making it obsolete.

Some of the most famous statues in history are copies of lost originals. The statue of Augustus of Prima Porta is thought to be a copy of a now-lost bronze original. But is it really a copy if it is itself regarded as a masterpiece of human skill?

Something to think about.