(b Belfast, Aug 12, 1799; d London, Dec 9, 1870).
Irish sculptor. He was apprenticed to a coachbuilder in London in 1813 and lodged with the sculptor Pierre Chenu from whom he learnt to model. He first exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1822 and in 1830 entered the Royal Academy Schools on the recommendation of John Constable. His first important work was the memorial to William Tennant (d 1832) in the Rosemary Street Presbyterian Church, Belfast. His chief patron, T. W. Beaumont, MP for Northumberland, commissioned busts and ideal subjects in marble such as Early Sorrow (1847; Belfast, Ulster Mus.). Beaumont paid for MacDowell to study in Italy following his election as ARA in 1841.
In 1846 he became an RA and submitted a Nymph (London, RA) as his diploma piece, continuing to exhibit at the Royal Academy until his death. His finest work is the memorial to Frederick Richard Chichester, Earl of Belfast (d...