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The artist was born in Australia, although he grew up in Manchester. Encouraged by his family, he studied medicine at university, before giving it up to become an artist. He moved to London and enrolled at the Chelsea Art School. There he met Augustus John and became fascinated by John's painting style, dynamic personality and Bohemian lifestyle. John described his young protege as 'no ordinary personage [he] has the divine mark on his brow'.
At the outbreak of the First World War, Lamb returned to his medical studies. In 1916 he was sent to Macedonia, where he won the Military Cross for his work. In September 1918 he was at the Western Front where, only weeks from the Armistice, he was badly gassed. At the outbreak of World War Two, he was commissioned as a war artist.
In 1947 he was elected to the Royal Academy, a marked contrast to his rebellious youth. He died 11 years later in his 77 year.
oil on canvas
H 34 x W 39.5 cm
presented by the Contemporary Art Society for Wales, 1947