Sculptor of ‘scary’ Lucille Ball statue is ‘heartsick,’ says he’ll fix it

This is a bronze statue in Lucille Ball's hometown that was intended to look like, well, Lucille Ball. Now the artist is taking responsibility for missing the mark with his "Scary Lucy."
(The Post-Journal)

The artist responsible for the freaky Lucille Ball bronze in her New York hometown is taking responsibility for what he calls his “most unsettling sculpture” and saying that he’ll refurbish it for free because it doesn’t do justice either to the late comic actress or to his creative skills.

"[I]in retrospect, it should have never been cast in bronze and made public, and I take complete ownership of that poor decision,” sculptor Dave Poulin said in a letter to the Hollywood Reporter in which he claimed “full responsibility for ‘Scary Lucy.’”

The crazy-eyed, 400-pound statue went up in a Celoron, N.Y., park in 2009, and a Facebook page advocating its demise was created in 2012. But the debacle didn’t go global until last week, after a local newspaper published a story about the Lucy loved by few.

“When you see it at night, it is frightening,” the founder of the Facebook page told the Post-Journal, advocating removal and replacement with a statue by another artist rather than paying to have the current one refurbished.


Since the Vitameatavegamin-inspired likeness hit the spotlight, the We Love Lucy! Get Rid of this Statue page has been reposting pictures showing the statue’s face edited into scenes from old stills from “I Love Lucy,” plus an image indicating that if a person were to mix Lucille Ball and Chucky the killer doll, the Celoron statue would be the result.

On Sunday, the Facebook page creator, who remains anonymous, announced he’d be going public “in the next few days” with a plan to raise funds for a new statue that would be erected in Jamestown, N.Y., instead of Celoron. He also expressed little faith in the idea of fixing the existing work.

“Celeron has been talking about chopping the head off this statue and putting on a new head,” he wrote. “That would turn this monster into a true Frankenstein! You can see that even with a new face... and even if they get the face right... the body is as horrible.”

Poulin, whose website says he’s done more than 120 commissioned life-size bronzes, said he was “heartsick” over the feelings his creation had elicited. The “I Love Lucy” statue was privately commissioned.

“From the day of its installation, I have shared my disappointment in the final outcome and have always believed it to be by far my most unsettling sculpture,” Poulin said in his letter.

It was never his intent, he said, to disparage the image of Lucille Ball.

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