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Leslie Bowles

1885 – 1954

Leslie Bowles (1885-1954), sculptor, was born in Sydney and began his studies in modelling and woodcarving at the Brisbane Technical College. In 1910 he won a McConnell scholarship and travelled to London, where he studied at the South London School of Sculpture and the Royal Academy School and served as an assistant to Bertram MacKennal. After serving in the Royal Tank Corps in France from 1914 to 1919, Bowles resumed his studies at the Royal Academy before returning to Australia in 1924. Here, alongside a number of other artists, he was employed by the Australian War Memorial on the production of dioramas depicting aspects of the First World War. From 1925 to 1931 Bowles was head sculptor of the modelling section at the Memorial. His diverse work included several major sculptures, including The man with the donkey; the gargoyles in the commemorative courtyard; and, with Napier Waller, the initial sculptural feature for the Hall of Memory. Bowles was often consulted on the commissioning of sculptures and memorials until his death in 1954.

Updated 2018