“The quality of this book and its abundant illustrations attest to Hall’s accomplishments.” —Joan Carpenter Troccoli,
New Mexico Historical Review
“Joby Patterson leaves no ground unplowed, no furrows un-raked, uncovering the details that transform a biographical study into a fascinating and riveting journey of an Arts and Crafts artist and her husband striving to capture the beauty they discovered for others to enjoy.” —Arts & Crafts Collector
Norma Bassett Hall (1888–1957) spent the eventful years between the two world wars as a printmaker in Oregon, Kansas, New Mexico, Virginia, and Europe. The end of the Great War brought a decade of renewed inspiration and prosperity that drove prints to all-time high values, the Depression left artists almost penniless, and World War Two brought about a near market collapse and a complete revision of taste. This upheaval pushed Norma and her husband, Arthur William Hall (1889–1981), to adapt and create despite such unpredictability.
Wherever she lived, Norma interpreted the geographic richness of North America and Europe. From the windy coast of Oregon to the rocky pastures of heartland Kansas, from the Indian pueblos of New Mexico and Arizona to the idyllic inlets of Scotland and the hamlets of France, Norma found a wealth of material to depict on the woodblock. Her color prints capture village walls of rosy warmth, violet skies at transitional hours, and figures—in markets, at the wash, or on village streets.
Nearly all the prints composing Hall's graphic oeuvre—linoleum cuts, woodcuts, and serigraphs—have been located, studied, and represented here in more than 110 illustrations. Whether of landscape or figures, American or European, her prints express a brief moment in place and time—a temporal vignette through which we can glimpse the past.
About the Author
Joby Patterson is an art historian specializing in early twentieth-century American printmaking and the author of Bertha E. Jaques and The Chicago Society of Etchers. She lives in Eugene, Oregon.