William Male, also known as Bill or Willie, was born in 1918. He was an anglophone Quebecer who lived most of his life in or near Montreal, except for the war years which he spent in Europe, serving in the Canadian Armed Forces. After being wounded in Italy in 1944, Bill returned deaf in one ear, to Montreal, where he found employment as a furniture restorer with the firms of Henri Morgan and Alexandre Craig.
In the 1970s, without any training of any kind, Bill Male started painting. Perhaps it was in response to certain voids in his life as a bachelor: "I never got married, the war got in the way of that" he said. Perhaps his solitary life prompted him to fill his paintings with images of people enjoying various social activities - viewing a show, sitting in a bar, picking fruit in an orchard, playing cards... In any case, these images speak of joy, friends, love and family. There are also, however, expressions of melancholy and loneliness in Bill Male's work, especially the solitary portraits which most often feature a woman sitting alone and waiting.
When Bill Male retired he opened his own little antiques restoration shop. He worked in his shop every summer and spent his winters painting his dreams and reminiscences. Bill Male died in 2003.