Caryl Hall, a decorative artist who turned blank walls, floors and ceilings into works of art, died Saturday at her home in Northport, her family said. She was 82.
Hall, diagnosed with Alzheimer's in 2006, had started hospice care about a week before her death, said her daughter, Deborah McFadzen, 49, also of Northport.
With no formal training, Hall carved out a career as a muralist whose works were commissioned by celebrities such as Diana Ross and socialites such as David and Peggy Rockefeller, said friend and colleague Philip Jordan of Greenlawn.
"Working for them was like a feather in her cap," he said. "It proved how well thought-of she was."
Hall painted Ross' children's rooms as well as the entrance of the singer's Greenwich, Conn., home in the 1980s, Jordan said. Hall transformed the foyer into a jungle filled with vines and monkeys.
"Most people train to be an artist. She was born an artist," Jordan said.
Born April 14, 1930, in Hempstead, Hall went door to door at 16, finding work as an artist. She never stopped.
"My mother painted everything," McFadzen said. "The fridge was a wicker basket. The front entrance was a tree. The washer and dryer -- she painted them green."
As a child, McFadzen said, her friends knew her home was a different sort of place. "I used to love to go my friends' houses because their houses were normal. All I wanted was carpeting and regular floors."
In 1980, McFadzen and her husband, James, moved into Hall's Northport home. In grandson Taylor's room, Hall painted a scene from the book "My Side of the Mountain," a story about a little boy who went to live in a forest, McFadzen said. Hall painted meadows in granddaughter Kaylee's room, which the girl shared with her younger brother, Braedon.
"My mom was very unconventional. And I was so conventional," McFadzen said. "And now I am swinging over to her side."
In addition to her daughter, Hall is survived by two sons, Douglas Hall, 60, of California, and Gregory Hall, 56, of Bristol, R.I.; and three grandchildren.