Lamberts

Andrew Motion, Author
Andrew Motion, Author Farrar Straus Giroux $22.5 (387p) ISBN 978-0-374-18283-0
Reviewed on: 05/01/1987
Release date: 05/01/1987
A willingness to court disaster and reckless excess united the three generations limned in this intensely serious family portrait. Robust, flamboyant George Lambert, son of a Baltimore railway engineer, was reared in the New South Wales outback and became the most famous Australian painter of his day. In London he boxed Augustus John to the ground. His long absences from home added to the insecurities of his son Constant, who became a hard-drinking composer and conductor. Constant treated his own marriage as an amusing diversion; his ballet Horoscope cryptically described his affair with ballerina Margot Fonteyn. His jazz-classical fusions and a score for Diaghilev are now largely forgotten. Constant's son, Kit, manager of the rock group The Who, led a messy life of heroin addiction, drink and debt. Motion, an English poet and critic, explores the ways that each generation's flaws and neuroses were visited upon the next. (May)
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