Irina Hale, 90, in August 2022 (UK writer/illustrator: "Chocolate Mouse
From Lenona@21:1/5 to All on Tue Jun 13 12:38:39 2023
She was born in London to Russian and Irish parents on August 2, 1932 and graduated from the Bath Academy of Art.
Apparently, she died on her 90th birthday, in Cisternino, Apulia, Italy. (Wikipedia says of that location: "Its main economic activities are tourism, the growing of olives and grapes, and dairy farming.")
"The artist Irina Hale died at the age of 90: Leaves a void in the Itria Valley"
BRINDISI - The community of Cisternino mourns the disappearance of the Russian artist Irina Hale, a painter of great international renown, who died at the age of 90 and has lived for a memorable time in the Cicerone district in the heart of the Valle d'
Itria where she contributed invaluably to the cultural growth of the local area. Her insights into the artistic field have always been delighted and appreciated by local visitors and academic insiders who have paid homage to her with publications and
favorable reviews of her works. Irina also had a confidential way and was an easygoing person, it was easy to have a good personal relationship for those who had the good fortune to have known her. Understanding and listening to its recognized qualities.
And she fully deserved the honorary citizenship of Cisternino. The news of Irina Hale's disappearance immediately rebounded in Cisternino. Mayor Lorenzo Perrini expressed deep condolences for the death of the honorary citizen artist.
«Since the early 1970s she has contributed to the cultural growth of her beloved Valle d'Itria - says Perrini - she has worked through painting to spread a message of brotherhood among peoples. Even in his books, often addressed to children, he has
always suggested an approach to life based on the purest feelings and tenderness. Woman of culture committed to Peace". The university professor of art history Massimo Guastella, who had known and appreciated her on the occasion of artistic happenings (
Adriana Notte), is sorry for her disappearance.
A personal memory from the councilor for culture Roberto Pinto who underlined his great artistic passion and his enormous human qualities. A collaborative bond was created.
During the last winter period, the Anglo-Russian artist Irina Hale donated to the Municipality of Cisternino the most significant works of the artistic review "The Advent in the Roma and Sinti people" staged during the Christmas holidays at the Torre
Civic of Cisternino. In these days he was among the artistic protagonists of the traveling art exhibition entitled the Via Dell'Angelo, now in its fifth edition and set up in the hall of the Diocesan Museum of Ostuni.
Irina Hale was an Anglo-Russian artist, born in London in 1932 and died in Cisternino on 2 August 2022. She was a sculptor, pedagogue, author of children's books, illustrator, painter, author of shadow theater shows. He lived a good part of his life in
Puglia, in the Itria Valley, where he wrote children's books and created extraordinary works resulting from his reflections on the present - he felt the suffering of refugees and all those who live on the margins very much his own - using poor and
recycled materials such as cardboard, the fabrics he collected from everywhere, various objects and colors. He has left us a great testimony of simplicity, of pure art which, seen together, traces an "other" path of about ninety years of human history.
The exhibition dedicated to Roma and Sinti was created by Irina in the summer of 2021.
Roma and Sinti. History and stories to discover/ Irina Hale
Twenty-nine works dedicated to the "Porrajmos", the Shoah of the Roma and Sinti. The Irina Hale exhibition, set up by the Il Nuovo Fantarca social cooperative, has a declared educational intent and presents the original works of the recently deceased
Russian-Irish artist. Hale loved to use fabrics, cartoons, objects and colors of various kinds. His multi-material works outline in large stages the path of the history of the Roma and Sinti people, from the first exodus to the Roma camps of our cities.
In particular, Hale focuses on the years of the Second World War, when the Nazi regime locked up thousands of Roma and Sinti in concentration camps, about 550,000 of whom died. It is the "Porrajmos", which followed until the mid-1970s in northern Europe
the sterilization practices of Roma and Sinti women. The exhibition is accompanied by various appointments and initiatives, including film and short film screenings, book presentations and a series of workshops.
"Entitled 'A Spanish village half an hour before the end of the world' the mural was nearly painted over several times but eventually the College decided to keep it. E M Forster’s involvement may have helped save it: he knew of the mural and apparently
offered ‘constructive criticism’ while Irina painted it."
•Diciotto l'orsacchiotto (juvenile), Einaudi, Torino, 1974.
(about a teddy bear)
•Chocolate Mouse and Sugar Pig, and How They Ran Away to Escape Being Eaten (juvenile; self-illustrated), Atheneum, 1978.
("The two little friends of the title come packaged in pleated white paper cupcakecups, which they use for umbrellas when rain threatens to melt the Sugar Pig and the sun to melt Chocolate Mouse. The cups are also used as sleds when the two slide down a
dog's back, as shields to keep off a pursuing cat, as parachutes when they jump out of a window, as boats in which to sail down a rain-filled gutter, and as wings when Chocolate Mouse becomes a bat to escape the real mice who nibble at him in a stable.
The goodies' odyssey begins when they run away from a fat lady's table to avoid being eaten, and it ends on a farm where they are both kept safe (the mouse by a donkey, the pig by a little boy who wants a toy). ")
•Donkey's Dreadful Day (self-illustrated), 1982.
("Always longing to be somebody else, Donkey, a circus mascot, finally decides that he will be cook for the entire circus.")
•Brown Bear in a Brown Chair (self-illustrated), Atheneum, 1983.
("By adding more and more clothing, Brown Bear tries to distinguish himself from the brown chair in which he resides.")
•The Lost Toys (self-illustrated), Atheneum, 1985.
("When Bruno Bear, Flossie Rabbit, and the other toys are left behind in a bag on the train platform, they embark on a brave journey to find their way home.")
Baby Giant and the Broken Toys, 1987
•The Small Big Bad Boy, Viking, 1991.
("A young boy is told to be ``a Good Big Boy'' while his mother goes shopping. A bird appears at the window, flies in, and drops a magic pill into the boy's juice. ``I wish I was a Bad Small Boy,'' he says crossly and his wish is granted. The tiny lad
becomes not only naughty, but downright destructive. He tortures the cat, dumps flour on the houseplants, and smashes all of the eggs. Sipping more juice enables him to become Big and Bad before finally being restored to his original size.")
•Boxman, Viking, 1992.
("The idea for Boxman literally falls onto young Bob's head when he opens a closet door and some cartons tumble out. Family members each add a distinctive touch to the youngster's costume--Mom cuts out a mouth, Dad paints on a green moustache. But when
Bob becomes a bit too attached to his new persona, the members of the family put their heads together to bring the boy around.")
•How I Found a Friend, Viking, 1992.
("A boy tells of making friends with another child after their stuffed bears--left on a ledge together--exchange hats and then greetings. The boys' mutual surprise at finding the bears wearing each other's headgear prompts them to speak.")
•The Naughty Crow, Macmillan International, 1992.
("(The story) concerns Constantine and his sister, Marina, who live in turn-of-the-century Kiev. At their summer home in the country, they find an injured crow and christen it Cra-Cra. As it grows strong and healthy, Cra-Cra begins to follow the children
everywhere. But Cra-Cra, less than an ideal pet, wreaks havoc wherever he goes--he knocks over inkwells, pilfers jewelry and destroys a birthday party. Mamma and Papa banish the crow to the deepest part of the forest, but it makes its way back and
reinsinuates itself into the family . . . until the next household debacle.")