Sunday, July 01, 2012

Patterned Paper : Hal Woolf

Hal Woolf (1902-1962) studied art at Chelsea Polytechnic under Bernard Adams and then in Paris. He made a living as an artist, often of street scenes throughout the 30s and then went to war where it is possible that he had the reputation of being something of a rebel. His death in 1962 was surrounded by mystery and prompted parliamentary questions and an inquiry. You can read the text of the enquiry at the Hansard Website but the gist of it is that there is some question about whether he was being surveilled by the police in the days before his death, whether he was on some new drug, whether he was beaten by the police and whether the police knew of his whereabouts even after his family had reported him missing but failed to let on. There may also have been some connection between Woolf and the Profumo Affair

The rather sweet drawing I posted the other day was the only figurative sketch in a small folder of Woolf's work that I bought at auction. These wonderful sheets of hand-painted patterned paper were what drew me to the lot and the Bloomsbury-esque floral designs. This is material I think he executed at art school but, nonetheless, it has a great period charm and is extremely decorative.

These are currently on sale at the Callum James / Paper shop on Etsy. Do pop over and have a look if you haven't already, especially if you have a love of retro graphics of all kinds. We're still stocking the shop but adding more material all the time.

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