Kerry Hallam is a British impressionist artist who has produced approximately twelve thousand paintings and whose work is included in collections held by Brigitte Bardot and Björn Borg as well as decorating the permanent residence of Monaco's Ambassador to the United States. Hallam was trained in Chesterfield and London, and has been based in Nantucket since 1981. Hallam has developed a reputation as a wise rogue and enjoyed success with exhibitions worldwide, including one entitled Nude Paintings of Other Men's Future Ex-Wives. His work has been shown at art galleries in New York, London, Paris, Tokyo and Beverly Hills.
Hallam was born in Chesterfield, north east Derbyshire, where he sold his first painting, a watercolour of the Lake District, at an open air market aged thirteen He attended Chesterfield Art College for two years, going on to win a six year scholarship to London's Central School of Arts and Crafts. After studying under British masters Leslie Cole, Patrick Heron and Hans Tisdale, Hallam graduated with the National Diploma in Painting in 1957. He then spent two years in the British Army in Hong Kong and Malaya, where he was attached to the Black Watch and the Gurkha Brigade. In 1961 he returned to London, working in advertising as a draftsman and designer. In 1964, Hallam headed for the south of France to paint full-time.
Hallam's talent was acknowledged when he was selected for inclusion in Britain's Royal Society of Artists in Watercolour. In 1973 he moved to the United States. After a short career as a musical performer (during which he opened for James Taylor at concerts and released the LP Strandgut on Polydor Records), Hallam dedicated himself to painting. He established his first studio in Boston and in 1981 opened a studio and gallery on Nantucket Island, moving there in 1995.
Inspired by the Fauves, Hallam has a love for the 19th century French Post-Impressionists, Cézanne and Van Gogh. Hallam returns frequently to St. Tropez and the French Riviera, two of his favourite sources of inspiration. Noted for his striking colour harmonies, Hallam's panoramas continue to draw accolades, including a first place award by L’Association Pour le Promotion Artistique Francais. His work has been featured in a large number of print articles, such as the October 400 issue of Forbes magazine in 1999 as well as in PBS television specials. Chalk & Vermilion Fine Arts and Martin Lawrence Galleries are Hallam's most notable publishers.
Despite his volume of sales and critical acclaim, Hallam has become a cult figure in the art world and forged a reputation as something of a rogue. Fathering a child in his early 50s, he went on to present an exhibition of his work entitled Nude Ex-Wives.
- Recent work
Hallam returned to music in 2006 with Autumn Harvest, a CD released by Boston Skyline Records, featuring remastered songs from 1972. Nantucket Notables, a collection of watercolor sketches of Nantucket's residents, was published in 2007. A visual compilation of Hallam's work, Kerry Hallam: Artistic Visions, and his autobiography, Getting To Nantucket: An Artist's Journey, were both published in 2000.