Harold Mortimer-Lamb

The Art Lover

By (author): Robert Amos
ISBN 9781771510189
Softcover | Publication Date: October 1, 2013
Book Dimensions: 7.25 in x 9 in
192 Pages

About the Book

Harold Mortimer-Lamb’s name is in the index of almost every book written on the history of Canadian art, yet his place in that world has never been clear. Photographer, writer, painter, promoter—he was a man of many parts and the ideal patron and friend to some of Canada’s most famous artists, including A.Y. Jackson, Emily Carr, and Jack Shadbolt. At the centre of his story are his relationships with painter Frederick Varley and young student Vera Weatherbie, whom Mortimer-Lamb, at the age of seventy, eventually married, when she was just thirty. Profusely illustrated with his photos, paintings, and the art he collected, Harold Mortimer-Lamb: The Art Lover brings into focus an unknown chapter in Canadian art history.

About the Author(s)

Robert Amos has published eleven books on art—including five bestselling volumes on the life and work of beloved Canadian artist E. J. Hughes—and was the arts columnist for Victoria’s Times Colonist newspaper for more than thirty years. Amos was elected to the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts in 1995 and is an Honorary Citizen of Victoria. He lives in Oak Bay, British Columbia, with his wife, artist Sarah Amos.


“Before Amos’s book, Mortimer-Lamb put in only brief appearances at the edges of Canadian art history. He is a footnote in the biographies of many celebrated artists . . . He photographed them in his gauzy pictorialist style, hosted them at his house, corresponded with them, bought their work, wrote about them in the newspapers, and even paid their rent on occasion. He is ‘fifth business’ in the story of Canadian art, a minor player who nevertheless holds the key to the whole drama.” —Literary Review of Canada

The Art Lover shines a light on a man who lived here for only a brief time, but left a lasting legacy. It also opens the door to a little-known chapter of our history.” —The Times Colonist