Tony was born in Hollywood, California. His mother was a stunt woman in early Westerns and Clara Bow‘s movie double in Hollywood. In his youth, Tony was a Junior Olympics diving champion. He won the role of Wally Cleaver in a casting call with almost no previous acting experience.
Tony acted in the series until it ended in 1963. After that, he appeared in the television series My Three Sons, Dr. Kildare, Mr. Novak (five episodes in three different roles), The Greatest Show on Earth, and Never Too Young. From 1965 to 1968, he served in the National Guard, interrupting his acting career. On his return to acting, he was a guest star in the television series Adam-12, Love American Style, Knight Rider, Square Pegs, The Mod Squad, The Hardy Boys, and Emergency!
In 1987, he was honored by the Young Artist Foundation with its Former Child Star Lifetime Achievement Award for his role as Wally Cleaver. In 1986, he wrote an episode of The New Leave It to Beaver. In 1989, he made his debut as a director with an episode of The New Lassie, followed by episodes of Get a Life, Harry and the Hendersons, Coach, Babylon 5, Crusade, and Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. He served as the visual effects supervisor for Babylon 5. In 1996, he provided visual effects for the Fox television movie Doctor Who.
Dow has been an actor, director, writer, visual effects designer, producer, homebuilder, woodworker, painter and sculptor. A long-time goal was always to return to sculpting. In the early 2000’s he committed full time to his passion. His first work was created from burl wood found in the hills around his home. A friend and mentor, internationally recognized sculptor, David Huenergardt, encouraged Tony to produce some of the pieces in bronze.
Always inventing, he has continued to develop his “Artifact” and “Cityscape” series using similar techniques as well as working on a number of wall assemblages.
Tony’s talent in the area of modern sculpture was confirmed when one of his bronze sculptures, “Unarmed Warrior” was chosen for exhibition at the Salon 2008 de la National des Beaux Arts at the Louvre in Paris.
Dow lives in an artistic community in the Santa Monica Mountains with his wife, Lauren, a talented artist in her own right.
“One has to wonder what goes through the mind of an artist as his creation comes from perception. Does it start with a concept, a thought, or a belief? Maybe that is all absent. What about a clear mind and an uninhibited attitude? Whatever it is, it’s the artist’s right. Along the way there must be hiccups and roadblocks, for this is “Life”. The way the artist sees past all that, keeping the focus on the result, is what forms and strengthens an artist. Adapt and overcome! Starting with one of earth’s most primitive materials: roots. Finishing in a physical form of what are the artist’s ideals, imagination, and truth. To me, it is truly extraordinary.” – Christopher Dow (son)