The following biographical information has been provided by Raphael Hassell, grandson of the artist.
Born at Lachine, Quebec, he started painting at the age of 17 and studied at the Ontario College of Art under J.W. Beatty, J.E.H. MacDonald and F.H. Johnston. He also studied in England for a short time under Hayward Veal at the Heatherleys School.
He was employed by Brigden's Limited in graphic media until June, 1955, when he turned to full-time painting. He also worked for other firms including art editing for MacLean's Magazine. Hassell painted a variety of subjects including figures, portraits and landscapes. His work was noted by the Port Credit Weekly as follows, "Many of the pain
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