Honorary Fellow, American Institute of Architects (1981)
Born in Durban of Norwegian parents. Educated at Durban High School. Studied between 1949 to 1953 at the University of Natal School of Architecture under Ronald LEWCOCK and Barrie BIERMANN on a Kimberley and Government Scholarships. In 1948 to 1950 he was employed in Durban by FROLICH & KASS. From 1950 to 1953 he was in the employ of AD ADKIN in Durban. In 1955 he married June Wendy Meiring. They left for London where he was architect in the London County Council in 1956. In 1959 he was a partner in FROLICH, KASS & HALLEN at 2nd Floor, Corporation Building, Commissioner Street, Johannesburg. He practiced mainly in Durban from 1960His partnerships were respectively with J DIAMOND (1959-1962); M DIBB (HALLEN & DIBB, 1963-1969); Danie THERON (HALLEN & THERON, 1969-1970); thereafter with MJ SPEED (1970-), PHA CUSTERS, FGC EMMET and JLH (Lance) SMITH (HALLEN CUSTERS SMITH, 1980-).
He taught design and lectured at the University of Natal School of Architecture from 1966 until 1978.
He involved himself in a large range of cultural initiatives, where these relate to socio-political matters; and was involved in the architectural 'bureaucracy' - local, national, and international. The work of the practice, HALLEN THERON and PARTNERS, attempted to relate the forms and structures of buildings to site, social context, and appropriate construction method. Travels, sketches, writes, photographs and generally acts as an 'all-purpose' cultural busybody. He believes that architecture is an art, and that to have universal validity the work must have its roots in the particular. Too innovative a designer to have a close following, his novel formal solutions to conventional design problems have nevertheless become established exemplars.
(BIERMANN UIA Issue 8, 1985: 61)
Recipient of the Gold Medal Award from the South African Institute of Architects in 1980.
All truncated references not fully cited in 'References' are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.