Alec Wiles (1924-2020)

Alec Ernest Wiles was born in Southampton in 1924, after leaving school he trained briefly as a draughtsman before WWII broke out, he then enrolled in the RAF and spent the war in North Africa. After the war he followed his passion as an artist and sculptor. He worked in most media specialising in portraiture and the female form. He lived and worked across Southern England until 1961 when he moved to Cornwall with his wife and three daughters, settling and working from Bethel Studio in the hamlet of Twelveheads near Chacewater.

Alec’s life was recording the world, whatever he saw he would sketch or paint. He drew tourists on Newquay pier and painted directors of public companies in board rooms, town councillors, fishing boats and flowers. He was most widely known for his sculptures, mainly working direct from life in bronze, resin-bronze, ciment-fondu and plaster. Epstein and Rodin were his main influences and he said that he only strove for 'quality' in his work. His bronze portrait head of “Miriam” was exhibited at The Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, 1977 (No.1052) and he was an Associate of The Penwith Society of Arts and a Member of the Newquay Society of Artists.

'My main subject is the female form and the human head (Rodin and Epstein are my main influences) but my taste in sculpture is very wide.  My only ambition is for "quality" in my work.'

Whybrow (1986) Forms and Faces: Sculptors in SW Cornwall;

Alec Wiles

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