Matthew Stone at Franco Cervietti Studio, Pietrasanta, Italy
April 12 2014
In April English artist Matthew Stone completed a short residency with Franco Cervietti in a research trip that has been supported by the Italian Cultural Institute in London. Situated in Pietrasanta, Franco Cervietti & C. Snc is a marble-sculpting studio that rests on the foothills of the Apuan Alps located just east of the coastal town of Forte dei Marmi and roughly 20km south of the famous marble quarries of the Carrara region.
Founded in 1962 by Danilo Cervietti, the father of current owner Franco, the studio now employs a total of ten highly skilled craftsmen, and is one of the leading marble sculpting facilities in Italy. A series of accompanying photos taken by Stone documents his time at the studio and illustrates the labor intensive process involved in each of the works created by the team.
The work of the studio is renowned in a number of areas. Danilo Cervietti built a reputation on his productions of exceptionally crafted models and replicas of classical and modern marble sculpture as well as his work in the areas of marble restoration and portrait commissions. Today Franco and his team have diversified their work to include collaborations with some of contemporary arts most celebrated practitioners including Niki de Saint Phalle, Jeff Koons and Fernando Botero. Some of the studio’s most notable work includes five full-scale replicas of Michelangelo’s David, two busts of Saddam Hussein for his former presidential palace in Iraq and Alison Lapper Pregnant, a monumental work by British artist Marc Quinn that was displayed on the fourth plinth in Trafalgar Square, London. They have also sculpted work for the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington DC and the Altar Duomo in Pisa as well as collaborative architectural pieces with Renzo Piano’s studio in Italy.
Text: Harry Woodlock