The People's Sculptor

The Life and Art of William Lamb

By John Stansfeld

Format: Paperback

This book is the first full-scale study of one of Scotland's most talented yet underrated artists. William Lamb(1893-1951) overcame many obstacles to produce a prodigious volume of work, including painting sculpture and woodwork - a large part of which he bequeathed to the nation. An unsung hero who fully deserves recognition.

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Birlinn Limited

Birlinn publishes mostly non-fiction books, ranging from biography to history, military history and Scottish interest. Their imprints, Polygon Books, Arena Sport Books and John Donald Books, publish a wide variety of genres including culture, literary fiction, poetry and sports.

Product Description


Tracing the life and work the life of Scottish sculptor William Lamb (1893 - 1951) this is a story of indomitable will and irrepressible creativity. The son of an alcoholic father and a survivor of the 'lost generation' who came of age in 1914, it was with courage and determination that Lamb overcame the obstacles life put in his path. Traumatised in the trenches at Passchendaele during the First World War and blighted by depression, Lamb was also severely wounded in his right hand. With characteristic resolve he retrained with his left hand - at Edinburgh College of Art and the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris. Despite the uncertainty of an art market rocked by world war, Lamb established his reputation in Montrose with sculptures of the townspeople and fishermen of east Scotland. He produced prints, water colours and drawings to help fund his sculpture. Occasionally he undertook commissions and in 1932 he completed portrait bronzes of the young Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret.

The Second World War dried up his supplies of materials, so he turned to wood carving and, when death finally put an end to his creativity, he left a large collection of his artwork as a legacy to the Scottish people.

Additional Information

Additional Information

Format Paperback
Imprint Birlinn Limited
Publication Date 26 Sep 2013
ISBN 9781780271620
Number of Pages 140

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Press Reviews

'an outstanding artist whose sense of place was an integral part both of who he was and of his art' - Duncan Macmillan, Emeritus Professor of the History of Scottish Art, Edinburgh University 'The genius who made metal sing' - Scottish Daily Mail 'interesting and informative' - Scottish Home and Country

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