Perl was an Austrian sculptor and engraver, born in Liezen. He studied with Hellmer Zumbusch and Kundmann.
Besides a large body of Art Deco sculpture he designed coin and madallions, and was commissioned for portrait busts.
He died in Vienna.
Karl (Carl Sigmund) Perl was born into a wealthy family at Grafenegg Castle near Liezen. His father Carl Franz Perl, who ran a modern steam brewery in Styria, came from Vienna, his mother Maria Agnes Wagner from Silesia. When the castle and the brewery burned down - presumably after an arson - the father went to Vienna with his sons Karl and Rudolf.
When his father passed away in 1887, an uncle became the legal guardian. He recognized Karl's talent for carving and sent him to the Wood School founded in 1874 in Wallachian-Meseritsch (now Valašské Mezi?í?í) in Moravia. Then Perl enrolled for a year at the School of Applied Arts in Graz. Through the mediation of his uncle Bernhard Baumeister , actor at the Burgtheater, Perl was able to study sculpture at the Vienna Academy of Fine Arts under Edmund von Hellmer , Caspar von Zumbusch and Carl Kundmann from 1896 - even without admission criteria such as secondary school diploma or Matura. In 1902 he was awarded the Preleuthner Prize of the Academy for the design of the large sculpture "Consolation" and in the same year he received a three-year scholarship for his further education in Italy. In addition, he reached awards for medals and plaques in two competitions of the "Friends of Medal Art and Small Sculpture". In 1911 he was awarded the Little Golden State Medal.
On 1 May 1912 Perl was accepted as a member of the Künstlerhaus. He was a member of the Sculptors Association and the Medailleur Association. He had his studio at Hirschengasse 7 in Mariahilf.
During the First World War he was stationed as a soldier in Ukraine. In 1922 he married the painter Olga Jellinek , whom he had met during a visit to the entertainment establishment Tivoli.
In 1923, Perl received the Anton Wedl Award "for the entirety of his works shown in the annual exhibition" in the Künstlerhaus, in 1924 a subsidy from the Ministry of Education. In 1930 he was awarded the prize of the city of Vienna for the sculpture "Schmerz". He also made a variety of plaques. In the 1930s and 1940s, some of his works were purchased by the City of Vienna for the Municipal Collections.
At the exhibitions in the Künstlerhaus during the Nazi period Perl offered initially also National Socialist-influenced works such as "Führer" portraits for sale, later he showed only thematically unsuspicious objects. In 1944, Perl's studio in Vienna was destroyed by aerial bombs.
In 1946, he was awarded the "Golden Laurel" of the Künstlerhaus for his seventieth birthday. In the last years of life Karl Perl was supported by the Künstlerhaus. He died on August 2, 1965 in Vienna and was buried on August 9, 1965 at the Southwest Cemetery.
Perl was a member of the Meidlinger Schlaraffia Association "Castell Am Beautiful Bronnen" and wore there the name "Knight spear of Spießingen".