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Turlock artist featured in West Side Theatre exhibit
Don Hall exhibit 1
Turlock artist Don Hall stands next to his painting “Ingres,” which depicts Hall reacting to the masterpiece, “La Grande Odalisque” (Photo contributed).

The West Side Theatre’s ongoing mission of expanding art access to the area and highlighting the local talent has brought a new exhibit to the theatre from Turlock artist Don Hall.

Fresh from his recent “Single Exposure” exhibition at the Mistlin Gallery, Hall is sharing four of his works that represent his artistic point of view and skill.

“Self-portraiture has been a continuing theme in my work,” Hall said. “As a young artist I copied masterworks as a learning exercise, and later found myself employed at Merced College teaching art history.  Artists like Rembrandt and Van Gogh and many others often created self-portraits.  I began inserting myself into images of famous paintings in art history.  This theme requires me to work in many different painting styles.  The self-portraits act as a unifying element for the visually diverse styles and subject matter.  Many of my paintings often include an undeniable element of humor.”

Don Hall exhibit 2
“Fairey” features Hall in Shepard Fairey’s iconic poster (Photo contributed).

Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, Hall moved to Millbrae, California when he was five years old.  After graduation from Mills High School, Hall became an art major, studying at The College of San Mateo, College of Arts and Crafts and California State University, Stanislaus.  Hall earned a bachelor of arts degree in Art and began working at Merced College as an Environmental Designer before returning to CSUS to earn a post graduate degree in printmaking and later a master’s degree in interdisciplinary studies in sociology and art. After graduation, Hall began teaching art history and drawing at several local community colleges. 

Retirement from teaching did not slow Hall down as he then began volunteering with the humanitarian organization, Potters for Peace (PFP). PFP is a nonprofit organization that has created a network of potters and others to improve quality of life and preserve tradition using local skills and materials. PFP primarily works in Central America and has headquarters in Boulder, Colorado. Hall helped further the organizations endeavors to teach pottery and ceramic water filter construction in developing countries such as India and in Central America.

In addition to his vibrant paintings, Hall also works with ceramics.  He shares that he likes to switch back and forth between 2D and 3D creations where his likeness has begun to appear in his sculptures, too. Currently Hall creates art full-time and hosts a YouTube channel that teaches “how to” ceramics. 

The installation at the West Side Theatre features:

·         Ingres, honoring Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres, depicts Hall reacting to the masterpiece, La Grande Odalisque.

·         Fairey, features Hall in Shepard Fairey’s iconic poster.

·         Thiebaud is a sweet treat dedicated to Wayne Thiebaud’s Encased Cakes.

·         Van Gogh finds Hall seated in the second version of Vincent van Gogh’s The Bedroom.

The collection will be on exhibit at the West Side Theatre through April. The theatre is located at 1331 Main St. in Newman. Hall can be found on Facebook, on YouTube @donhallworks and through his website