Seven years after WW2 ended, the air remained thick with despair and there were still piles of rubble on the ground in Groningen, where once had been handsome buildings around the city square.
Bouman made a bold decision for a new beginning in Australia.
Perhaps this vivid lingering image of urban destruction promoted an early taste for the process of building and architecture to become firmly lodged, leading to some interesting adventures. At first, his education was unusually haphazard but soon, there followed a more regular template through an established trajectory via university. Then later, working in a variety of architectural offices, including in London, real life made an appearance.
He was successful in significant Australia-wide architectural competitions including: The High Court of Australia, Canberra and The Australian Stockman's Hall of Fame and Outback Heritage Centre. This building was opened by the Queen in Longreach Queensland,1988; she flew in especially. Many strange Outback stories were to unfold as a consequence. This experience revealed and unfolded the mystery and dense excitement to be found in the flexing of design muscle.
More recently, he has published some books, which tell the story of his architecture, unorthodox adventures as a migrant child and re-visiting the old country as an adult, to check out what his contemporaries have been up to in the meantime, after an absence of more than 60 years.
It deals with true migrant stories. Following long years of Nazi occupation and a bleak outlook in post WW2 Groningen (Netherlands), this encompasses the exciting six-week travel to the Great Southern Land via the Panama Canal, with exotic pit-stops on the way, unorthodox education of a newly-arrive...