"Statuary. Please explain."
I met Carl D'Alvia in the spring of 2005 at the American Academy in Rome, where he was sharing a vast rooftop studio with his wife, the painter Jackie Saccocio. I visited their studio often and became aware of Carl's patient and painstakingly slow process of making sculpture. He seemed right at home in the land of Bernini, Michelangelo, and Borromini. I've been a follower and a fan ever since and caught up with him on a chilly day last March in his Connecticut studio.
Laurie Simmons I love your work, but sometimes I find myself staring at it and thinking you've been making the same sculpture over and over again, for how many years?
Carl D'Alvia Well, I sort of started around 1999 in terms of this body of work—my mature body of work, let's say—so yes, it's been 16–17 years.
LS If I were summarizing your work for a Martian, somebody who knew nothing—
CD A dumb Martian.
LS (laughter) A Martian who's not interested in art, I would say that this guy Carl takes different shapes—some like animals, some of them vegetable or minerals—and renders mostly hair and fur, moving to feathers, on the surfaces of all these shapes.
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