HALE, Kathleen

(1898 - 2000)
"An exceptional sense of humour and an extraordinary artistic talent"

Salford-born Hale moved to London at the age of 19 in order to make a living as an artist. She worked as Augustus John's secretary and made a wide circle of artist friends, including Vanessa Bell. During the 1920s she earned a living as an illustrator, accepting commissions for book jackets, posters, and illustrations for children's books, as well as selling her own drawings. 

She married a medic, Douglas Maclean, with whom she had two sons. Like so many successful children's stories, Orlando the marmalade cat was devised as bedtime entertainment for the author's own children. The books were an immediate hit with chlldren, their humour and large size appealing to their young imaginations. The colour of Hale's drawings reproduced wonderfully as large lithographs and make a lasting impression.

Kathleen Hale was awarded an OBE in 1976 and died on 26 January 2000 at 101 years of age.

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