b'LA Car ManThe Worlds of William A. Hall Essay by Colin RhodesCalifornia. The streets and satellites of Los Angeles are at the heart of this story. For two decades William A. Hall lived on those streets. For more than half of those in a succession of automobiles; a couple of Cadillacs, a Buick, and most recently a trusty old Dodge that is determined to just keep on going. Cars speak America to me. They are the image of a people presented to the world. They represent freedom of movement. They symbolise the American dream. At the centre of movies likeAmerican Graffiti On the Road and books like, automobiles play the parts of hero, villain and victim.They are also often precarious sanctuary. This was the way for Will. Too hot in summer and too cold in winter, but dry and rel-atively safe. Remarkably, the constrained space of the automobile interior was also a place in which he produced a substantial body of art. Working in the car up to twelve hours a day every day, Will painstakingly devel-oped an intuitive opus of images and writing that offer insights into possible fu-tures and alternate presents. They are a sprawling, continually developing set of visual narratives, inventions and social comment. They are, moreover, compelling visual objects. Visions of a world seen through an imaginative eye. William Hall was born in 1943 in Los Angeles. He describes his parents as creative people. His mother, he says, was a poet who told young Will that her side of the family was descended from the British Romantic poet and aristocrat, Lord Byron. His paternal grandfather, T. Thomas Hall was an illustrator in New York, and Will also describes his father as an illustrator, though he held down a day job as a traf-fic consultant. The family moved home several times, always in outer satellites of the Los Angeles conurbation. 7'