Norma Bassett Hall Biography

Norma Bassett Hall




Norma Bassett Hall was born in Halsey, Oregon on May 21, 1888, and took her first art lessons at the School of the Portland Art Association. Later she attended the Art Institute of Chicago, graduating in 1918. There she was an assistant teacher for one year and met her future husband, Arthur William Hall.

Her interest in woodblock print making dated from 1922 when she was on a Cannon Beach, Oregon honeymoon trip with Arthur. The couple decided to make a pictorial visit of their trip by copying block prints from a book, and she saw what she described as the "real possibilities" of block print making. She used the oriental method, which is the mixing of dry color with water and rice-flour paste. She had a residency in Kansas in 1923, and furthered her interest and skills in color block prints. She and her husband spent two years in Europe, studying and sketching including time in London.  They returned to Howard, Kansas in 1927.

In 1942, the couple moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico where her reputation was established for her block prints of the Southwest, particularly New Mexico. After a short time, the couple settled in Alcalde, where the couple continued painting and also opened a summer art school. She began to devote a lot of time to serigraphs of local scenes and also did watercolors. The subjects of the totality of her work includes Kansas farm scenes, Oregon landscapes and New Mexico pueblos.

Norma Bassett Hall died in Santa Fe, New Mexico on May 1, 1957