We Love Lucy, But Not This Statue

Have you ever sat in front of the TV at your grandma's house, flipped through the channels in search of Cartoon Network, and came across an episode of I Love Lucy? It's likely. Lucille Ball was one of the most beloved actresses of the 20th century. She had an incredibly successful career, starring in the TV shows I Love Lucy, The Lucy-Desi Comedy Hour, The Lucy Show, Here's Lucy, and Life with Lucy. She was a comedian, a model, and a film executive. She was loved by millions. So why is there so much negative buzz lately?

In 2009, a bronze sculpture of Ball was erected in her hometown of Celoron, New York. The work depicts Lucy in I Love Lucy's famous "Vitameatavegamin" episode. Ever since the sculpture found its home in Lucille Ball Memorial Park, it has been blasted by critics and citizens alike who say it bears hardly any resemblance to the beloved 1950s sitcom star. Many have also noted that the statue's appearance is "disturbing," featuring "vacant eyes" and a"nightmare"smile. Now, six years later, the people of Celoron are calling for reform. 

A Facebook page, "We Love Lucy! Get Rid of this Statue!," was created to protest the work and appeal a replacement. Headlining photos of alarmed-looking people posing with the statue, the page and story became popular last week, grabbing media attention. The page has garnered nearly 10,000 likes.

Luckily, David Poulin, the artist behind the statue, says he will fix it for free. "I take full responsibility for 'Scary Lucy'," he says, adding that he didn't mean "to disparage in any way the memories of the iconic Lucy image." Poulin's offer to remake the statue free of charge comes as a pleasant surprise: he initially told Celoron Mayor Scott Schrecengos that he wanted $8,000-$10,000 for his labor. 

In a letter to the press, Poulin states "it puzzles me when an art work is donated to a community, they accept it, and then get angry and insist you redo the art work at your own expense. To create a life-size bronze is a consuming and expensive endeavor." He also mentions that when he was creating the sculpture, he struggled with the project, and admits that he "came up short, and was not able to rise to the challenge."

The resemblance is uncanny, right? Well, we wish Mr. Poulin the best of luck as he gives Lucy the makeover she deserves!