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Art Gallery of Greater Victoria celebrates art lover and patron Mortimer-Lamb
Vera Weatherbie, Portrait of Harold Mortimer-Lamb.
VICTORIA, BC.- This fall, the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria looks at one man’s lifelong passion for Canadian Art with Harold Mortimer-Lamb: The Art Lover.

Harold Mortimer-Lamb: The Art Lover runs from Nov. 15, 2013 to Feb. 23, 2014 in the AGGV’s Pollard Gallery. The exhibition features a large selection of works donated to the AGGV by Mortimer-Lamb (1872-1970) including his own award-winning photographs and paintings, and works by the many artists in his life, such as well known Canadians Jack Shadbolt and Frederick H. Varley. Works by Mortimer-Lamb, Varley, Sophie Pemberton and others, borrowed from public and private collections, augment the exhibition.

“Harold Mortimer-Lamb was a great supporter of the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria. He donated works to the AGGV during his lifetime; through a bequest; and many more have been purchased with a fund that was established as part of his estate,” said Jon Tupper, director of the AGGV. “Mortimer-Lamb has been extremely important to the growth of this institution, and we are deeply indebted to Robert Amos for creating this remarkable exploration of his life and legacy.”

Mortimer-Lamb was a significant figure in the Canadian art world for decades but there has been little information available about the man and his life. Robert Amos, guest curator of the exhibition and art columnist for the Times Colonist, began researching Mortimer-Lamb’s story in 1978 when his estate arrived at the AGGV. The Art Lover is the result of Amos’ many years of work on the subject. Amos has also authored a book by the same name which is being launched by TouchWood Editions to coincide with the exhibition opening.

“Mortimer-Lamb loved art: the artworks, the people who made them, and those who inspired them,” said Amos. “He is mentioned in the index of many books about Canadian art history but – until now – has remained a figure in the background.”

At the age of 70 Mortimer-Lamb married the 30-year-old artist Vera Weatherbie. They enjoyed 28 years of marriage. When Vera passed away in 1977 the AGGV received the Harold and Vera Mortimer-Lamb Bequest which included 192 pieces of art, their books, papers, over 250 of Harold’s photographs and a substantial sum of money to be used as an art-purchase fund.

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