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 Clement Arthur Hall  (1913 - 2003)

About: Clement Arthur Hall


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Lived/Active: California      Known for: landscape and portrait painting, designer, imagineer, murals

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
The following, submitted April 2003, is from Dave Hall, Los Angeles

Clem Hall was my father.  His birth date is Jan 2, 1913.  He died February 17, 2003.

Place of birth: England
Scholarship: Art Center College of Design 1935-1939
Memberships: America Watercolor Society, National Watercolor Society
(Past President), Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

First Professional Work: MGM Studios/Portrait and Scenic Artist

Portraits at MGM: Greer Garson, Walter Pidgeon, Peter Lawford, Fred Astaire, Elizabeth Taylor, Howard Keel, Mario Lanza, Ann Southern, Judy Garland, Deborah Kerr, Robert Taylor, Peter Ustinov and more...

Department word at MGM: American in Paris, Lust for Life, Musicals, Garbo Story

United States Army: Artist during World War 2, Illustrated training manuals, War posters, Shows for the Army

After the war: Paramount Studios, Head of Scenic Art Department from 1958-1970

Portraits at Paramount: Joan Blondell, Ann Margaret, Jerry Lewis, Helen Traubel, Bette Davis, Zsa Zsa Gabor, Hedy Lamarr, John Ford, Groucho Marx, Barbara McNair, Copied the Mona Lisa, Fred Astaire's daughter-in the film Pleasure Of His Company, Sidney Blackmer and more...

Scenic Backings at Paramount:
Lil Abner
On A Clear Day

Elvis Presley pictures
Rosemary's Baby - 1/3 of the Sistine Chapel ceiling and other paintings

Walt Disney Studios
(WED), Disney World, Disneyland, Tokyo Disney and Euro Disney: 1970-1983
Imagineer, concept designer and illustrator, numerous paintings

Special work at EPCOT: Florida
Original rendering of EPCOT
America Pavilion-painting of Pilgrims arriving Designed/executed paintings in the waiting area.

Paintings Exhibited: Private and business collections
National Museums
Life-size painting of King George III for the Forest Lawn Collection
(copy of the original)

Showboat Las Vegas
Intercontinental Hotel in Puerto Rico
Hilton Panama

The Life of Clem Hall
(written from his own words)

I was born an only child and as such, needed to amuse myself. I was given a little paint box and painted pictures of flowers as a child. When I was almost ten, our family took a ship to America. The kids on the ship played games. One game was racing around the deck. I won a Radiograph fountain pen. The ship docked in Montreal, Canada. After a couple days of sightseeing, we took the train and crossed the border into Detroit, Michigan. We had a Visa that our family had waited five
years to receive. We continued by train to San Mateo, California where we had relatives. I arrived in my English clothes which consisted of a jacket, tie, short pants and knee high socks. To top it off, I talked funny! This was the first time I had seen American children.

I was involved in a lot of fights due to my strange looking clothes and different way of talking. We would meet in a vacant lot after school to fight. Fortunately for me, my Dad had taught me boxing! I was soon accepted, and these same kids became my best friends. To this day, they call me by my nickname, "English" .

As a teenager, growing up, I had a variety of jobs. Using my trusty bicycle, I delivered newspapers for the "San Mateo Times" and telegrams for Western Union. I worked for a furniture store lettering price tags and setting up the window displays. I also worked for Penney's Department Store selling shoes and creating window displays. One of my favorite jobs was collecting tickets at the Fox West Coast Theater in San Mateo. I wore a fancy grey uniform with a double row of brass buttons down the front. Thrown over one shoulder was a grey cape with scarlet lining. On my head sat a tall hat with a plume. Due to my past experience creating window displays, the theater had me do the lobby displays. I also painted posters of the movie stars. In my heart, I knew I wanted more than a future doing displays, so I started taking private lessons in drawing. I was certain this was the right career choice for me I knew that I wanted to be an artist!

While I was in High School. I did portraits of children from local families. I liked painting watercolors of local scenes around San Mateo.  I designed the school logo--the Bear Cat and did a pen and ink drawing of an Elm Tree for the front cover of the Senior Yearbook. I liked to enter Poster Contests. I won twice, once in Elementary School and again in High School. My favorite prize was season tickets to the Symphony.

I had these interests outside of art and thoroughly enjoyed being an athlete and participating in sports. While I was in High School, I ran the 1/2 mile and won. I played basketball and our team won the Northern California Championship. I also loved to play soccer. My team was the Sons of St. George. My soccer team mates were mostly Scottish and English. At one time, my Dad and I were on the same team. Our team won the Peninsula Cup. I won an athletic scholarship to play soccer for San Mateo Junior College and was chosen "all conference" for the outside left

I was offered a scholarship to the Academy of Art in San Francisco.  I attended the school, and then I was offered a scholarship to Art Center in Los Angeles.  I knew I had achieved success at last I was ecstatic!

This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born in Lowestoft, England on Jan. 2, 1913. Hall immigrated to San Mateo, CA in 1922. His art studies began at the Academy of Advertising Art in San Francisco. From that school he was awarded a four-year scholarship to the Los Angeles Art Center School. From the 1930s he was a studio artist for MGM, Columbia, Paramount Pictures and Disney Studios until retirement in 1983. Hall died in Los Angeles on Feb. 17, 2003. Primarily a watercolorist, his works are mostly landscapes of southern California. Exh: Calif. WC Society, 1938-63; LACMA, 1943; City Hall (LA), 1951; NAD, 1956.
Edan Hughes, "Artists in California, 1786-1940"
Interview with the artist or his/her family.
Nearly 20,000 biographies can be found in Artists in California 1786-1940 by Edan Hughes and is available for sale ($150). For a full book description and order information please click here.

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