painter and illustrator, was an Anglo-American born in St Petersburg, Russia. He came to Sydney with his grandparents in 1887, aged 14, and worked on station properties around Nevertire, near Warren, NSW (chiefly at his uncle’s property?). While working as a cashier in a Sydney grocer’s shop, he studied art under Julian Ashton. He got his start as an artist when the Bulletin published some of his drawings in 1895-96; Cain or ('Biblical History’) (A back blocks version) , an original Bulletin drawing dated 1895, is in the Aer Gallery of Western Australia. Cartooning gave him an income that allowed him to devote his time fully to art. Some early bush cartoons are signed 'Geo. W Lambert/ Nevertire’ (e.g. 1896, ill. Rolfe, 99), others dated 1896-98 without an address are often of bush subjects, e.g. 'Boss cockie: “Give you a job? Why, you’re the fellow that set fire to my grass last season.”/ Traveller: “Yes, but surely you won’t let a man’s political opinions interfere?”’ 1896 (ill. Rolfe, 188). He also did stylish urban illustrations, e.g. for a poem The Two Gossips by “Breaker” Morant (n.d., ill. Rolfe, 104).
The Chivalrous Male 1897 (ill. Rolfe, 207) shows an Aboriginal man carrying spears with a woman and two children behind him and below it, an empty-handed man at the beach with laden woman behind: 'Legend (in both cases): “'Urry up. Liza – 'ow you women do drag!”’ Points of View , about a male and female artist discussing a new model’s figure, was published in the Bulletin on 9 December 1899, 18. Five Bulletin cartoons by Lambert are illustrated in Rolfe (216-19). Along with 'high art’ works by Lambert, the 1898 Grafton Gallery Exhibition of Australian Art in London included: Geo. W. Lambert, The Society of Artists, Sydney, cat.273, Six Drawings , lent by the “Bulletin” Newspaper Co., Sydney (et al).
As a good friend of the author, Lambert illustrated Louise Mack’s Girls Together (Sydney: A&R 1898). In 1899, aged 26, he won the NSW Travelling Scholarship. He studied in London where he also drew for the Strand and Pall Mall magazines; he also studied art in Paris. He continued to contribute to the Bulletin , which paid him a small salary. His work was usually illustration rather than comic drawings. Nothing Else , an ink and wash drawing heightened with white and gum Arabic of a man approaching a lady reclining on a sofa, was published in the Bulletin on 11 October 1902, 17 (for sale at Bridget McDonnell Gallery in July-August 2000 from the estate of Charles Donald, Sydney).
Three works by Lambert were offered by Bridget McDonnell Gallery in May 2001. Two were from the estate of Clarice Thomas: The Road to Jerusalem ,oil on panel, shown as catalogue no. 118 in the Lambert Memorial Exhibition at Anthony Hordern’s Fine Art Gallery, Sydney in 1930 (a larger version Australian War Memorial), and a pencil drawing, Fallen Australian Soldier , signed by Gladys Owen and Basil Burdett as trustees of the Lambert Memorial Fund. The third was the oil on panel Croquet on the Lawn at Belwethers, Cranleigh in Surrey . Tableaux of Australian history, held at the Imperial Institute, London 1911, included Enter the British (on the landing of the British) organised by Lambert – who played an Aborigine – Fred Leist and George Bell . Illustrated J.M. Whitfield, The Spirit of the Bush Fire Series , 3 parts, Sydney, n.d. (original drawing in Ron Radford’s Art Nouveau catalogue, Ballarat Fine Art Gallery [BFAG]).
Representative images: My Lady Nicotine , grey wash with opaque white highlights 28.4 × 25.4, original illustration to poem by 'P.Luftig’ (Peter Airey) describing the attractions of nicotine as if it were a woman, published Bulletin 4 December 1897, 14 (Mitchell Library [ML] Px*D439/8). See also Anne Gray, George Lambert: Catalogue raisonn? , 1996, Ill. no.62, p.204 etc. Illustration to Bancroft Boake, Where The Dead Men Lie and illustrations to Jessie Whitfield’s Spirit of the Bushfire , etc.
Black and white works in public collections include: Art Gallery of New South Wales (including History and Sport 1896, pen cartoon published Bulletin 23 May 1896 re governess and pupils: Teacher – What did Wallace do for Scotland? Bookie’s son – Nothink much. I’ve heard dad say he wished to.he’d pegged out when he was a foal , and The Letters 1907 (Paris), ink drawing of stockman at desk separated from a woman with music and painting by a line and a cupid illustrating a poem signed 'T.T.’, purchased from Josef Lebovic 1987); ML (lots); Dubbo Regional Art Gallery; National Gallery of Australia; National Library of Australia ( Oh, let us be joyful! 1895, ink original R4922, pub. Bulletin 18 January 1896 with caption: 'The Old Lady: “Stop crying, you little fool, and sing. Here comes a swell.”’); BFAG ( The wolf was at the door , acquired 1971 etc.), et al.