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Gilbert Ledward ( 1888 - 1960 )  Category ( Sculptors ) [suggest a correction]

Gilbert Ledward was an early twentieth-century English sculptor, best known for his public art monuments, particularly those related to the First World War. Ledward was born in the Chelsea district of London, in 1888, to a family with a long history in sculpting and allied arts. His father, Richard Arthur Ledward was a sculptor, and his mother came from a family who had been in the pottery and figure-making business for generations. His early education took place in London, but after his father's untimely death, his mother decided to take her five children to live in Germany. Ledward was not happy there, and after only a year returned to England to live with relatives.

Possessing artistic talent of his own, he decided to follow in his father's footsteps by enrolling as an art student at the Royal College of Art. His tutor there, Edouard Lanteri, encouraged the young man to pursue the genre of sculpting. After several years, Ledward continued his education at the prestigious Royal Academy School. By his mid-twenties he had completed his first major commission, which was a carved stone image of Calvary, located in Gloucestershire. The same year he became the recipient of an Academy Traveling Studentship, a Gold Medal, and the first Rome Scholarship in Sculpture. His stay in Rome provided invaluable training, inspiration from, and exposure to the great masters of sculpture. One year later, his scholarship ended and World War I had begun.

Ledward returned to England, though fate and the army brought him back to Italy in 1917. In 1918 he was recalled to England and given the position of war artist. Part of this position included executing works for the Imperial War Museum. Once the war ended he was deluged with commissions for memorial sculpture, and this is where he achieved his greatest fame and financial reward. One of the more famous of his monuments constructed during this time is a memorial on Horse Guards Parade, and a relief entitled 18-Pounder Gun in Action. In the decade following the war he also served as Professor of Sculpture at the Royal College of Art. Through his encouragement and guidance, several of his students were recipients of the Rome scholarship. During the 1930s he helped to pioneer the practice of carving stone direct, without first creating a model in clay. Unlike many other sculptors of his generation, Ledward did not veer into the realm of abstract, and all of his work feature natural figures.

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Title :Gilbert Ledward
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