Abstract Australis
Abstract Australis
Brighton, Victoria 3186 Australia
Ph: 0407 501 808
ABN: 66 086 690 771

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Anne Marie HALL (b.1945)

Anne Marie Hall was born in Melbourne in 1945. She studied at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology from 1960 to 1963 and went on to become a full-time artist.

Hall met artist John Perceval in 1967 after his first marriage to Mary Boyd (sister of Arthur Boyd) fell apart as he spiralled into alcoholism. Hall was drawn into the so-called Heide circle of artists living at John and Sunday Reed’s property, together with Arthur Boyd, Charles Blackman, Albert Tucker and Sidney Nolan. Hall married Perceval in 1972. Perceval spent a lot of time in a mental institution, Larundel, from 1977* and Hall and Perceval divorced in 1981.

Hall began to exhibit in group exhibitions from 1966 when she was included in the Young Melbourne Painters exhibition at Gallery A in Sydney, which also included paintings by James Doolin and Robert Jacks. ** Hall’s first solo exhibition was at South Yarra Gallery in Melbourne in 1968. Solo exhibitions followed at the Holdsworth Gallery in Sydney in 1970, the Bonython Art Gallery, Adelaide in 1971 and again in that same year at South Yarra Gallery. A retrospective of her work was mounted at Avant Galleries in Melbourne in 1975 and a large exhibition of her drawings, paintings and ceramics was held at the Powell Street Gallery in East Melbourne in 1981. She continues to exhibit in group exhibitions from time to time.

Hall was a finalist for the Archibald Prize in 1976 with her portrait of her husband, John Perceval.

Hall is considered the last remaining figurative expressionist from the circle of John and Sunday Reed at Heide. She has been described as painting more than the portrait of someone, she paints their souls. She is also known for her paintings of animals and familiar domestic surroundings.

In 1971, Herald art critic, Alan McCulloch, praised her work as “highly imaginative, strong in observation of character and understanding of distortion”, while Patrick McCaughey, of The Age, described her as “an heir to the Antipodean Movement” * and noted the influence that German Expressionism was having on Australian art at the time. However, her work was submerged by the attention given to that of her husband, John Perceval, as well as her need to care for him as he delved further into alcoholism and schizophrenia. James McArdle has described her as “the angel in the life of … the man manically painting on the other side of the room …”. *

Hall was certainly a collaborator with Perceval. Art historian, Traudi Allen, noticed, when writing Perceval’s biography, that the artist’s masterpiece Veronica and the Conspirators bears traces of Hall’s hand. She argues that Perceval had his wife copy the right-hand corner of Heironymous Bosch’s Christ Carrying the Cross, the inspiration for Veronica and the Conspirators, around which Perceval improvised. *** Art historians, such as Margaret Plant, have heralded this aspect of the work, seeing it as core to the overall impact. Thus, Hall was not just Perceval’s partner in life but also in his art.

With recent interest in re-discovering Australian female artists whose work has been subsumed by their husbands, recent works of Anne Hall’s that have become available are causing much interest in the art world. Hall is “an artist of great insight, individualism and vibrance” as her works testify. As Jeff Makin notes, Hall’s paint handling is “passionate, descriptive, deliberate” and her portraits of Perceval “no doubt because of daily contact, cuts right through appearances to Perceval’s very soul”. ****

Hall’s works are held in Collections at the National Gallery of Australia, the Ian Potter Museum of Art and the Geelong Gallery as well as in private Collections throughout Australia.

* December 8: Angel, On this Date in Photography, James McArdle ** Anne Hall, Centre for Australian Art, Australian Prints + Printmaking *** John Perceval, Traudi Allen, 1992 **** Auction collection a reminder of some of Australia’s great artists, Australian Auction Review, Richard Brewster, 2 March 2016


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