William Ault Biography


I am writing to fill in the blanks so to speak, regarding my late father, William E. Ault.

He was born in Las Cruces New Mexico on Feb.1, 1922 and grew up in Tucson AZ. He then left to go to Los Angeles in 1946 after his war service, ending up as a painter in the NYC Outdoor Show and subsequently traveling back and forth to Europe until he decided on a whim to go up to Big Sur to see Henry Miller who he had corresponded with and met in Paris. Returning to New York, he continued painting until he came to Los Angeles and developed the camera for restoring old paper and nitrate film from 2 basic Eclaire'(sp?) movie cameras which were used to transfer the old stock onto safetyfilm.

His movie was made up on Beachwood Drive in our backyard using a still from "Intolerance" and my grandmother playing the piano music. He continued his interest in both painting and film making - there is a picture of him in the autobiography of Henry Miller standing with Miller's daughter Barbara. He ended his life's work by working for UCLA Film and Television Archives until 1990. He then retired to Tombstone AZ until his death from lung cancer on March 19, 2000.

He counted among his film infuences Fellini, Chaplin, and Dennis Hopper, " Last Movie" was one of his favorites. Thank you for your time with information, late as it is. One of his paintings is in the Boston Fine Arts Museum titled "La Boca Roja". Gaugin, Modligani, and Gorman the Southwest Indian Artist were among his favorites.

He was previously married to Cynthia Bissell and Natalie Wilson and is survived by myself and his grandson Sean William Ault.

--Mary, 2003.

William Ault