Sergio Furnari, a world-known master artisan, has been creating sculptures and customizing
tile art internationally for a number of years. Many clients have asked Sergio to hand-paint custom ceramic & terra cotta tiles for their pools, furnitures and facades etc. Among his signature
lifetime sculpture is the famous 'Lunchtime on a Skyscraper - A Tribute to America's Heros' which
is displayed periodically in Soho, New York City. His studio is located in Long Island City, New York.
Sergio was born in Sicily in the famous town of Caltagirone, which has been revered since the ancient time of Greece for it's beautiful sculpture. True to his environment, an innate, artistic talent became evident early in his life, and by age five he was drawing and sculpting. At age six he took his first job sweeping floors at the Caltagirone Sculpting Foundry. The perfect arena to fuel his creative passion, he spent the next six years there working, learning and tuning his skills. "I used to get out of school two in the afternoon and then go to the foundry from two until eight every day," he says.
Though appreciative of his background, the young furnari had a fascination with New York City, and during his first visit at age eighteen, he discovered that behind the impressive skyscrapers were immigrants from all over the world. To him, this made New York City the greatest city on earth.
Furnari was destined to become a master in sculpture and painting. Even his surname, "Furnari", which means, 'the people who attend the oven,' alluded to his future at the kiln. Through the years Furnari took sculpting to new levels, blending old and new to create his own unique style. Each of his sculptures are made of terra cotta and baked in his special oven. His sculptures represent regular hard-working people with their own joy and sadness of life. Furnari's approach is both sensitive and whimsical, and his keen ability to show emotion instantly brings the viewer into his subjects world. His sculptures come alive, as if they may have souls. "Even a thousand years from now they will still be alive," Furnari says.
Throughout history traditional sculpture commonly depicted figures of political, religious or social significance. Furnari will long be remembered for his sculptural 'slice of life' figures, many of which can be found in museums and private collections around the world. He jokes that he is "more powerful than Michelangelo or Picasso" for the simple fact he is alive today, "fighting and kicking every minute," just as his sculptures seem to.
Sergio appeared in Episode 6 of ABC's Extreme Makeover in November of 2004.
CURRENTLY, SERGIO IS WORKING ON A PROJECT AT THE GRAY CLIFF HOTEL & RESTAURANT IN NASSAU, BAHAMAS WHICH WILL BE FINISHED IN THE SUMMER OF 2009. HE IS ALSO DEVELOPING A RESORT IN MONTERICCO, GUATAMALA WHICH WILL BE FINISHED AROUND END OF 2010.