Artist Search
a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z 

 Jerome Hill  (1905 - 1972)

About: Jerome Hill


Examples of his work


Quick facts

Exhibits - current  



Book references

Magazine references pre-2007  

Discussion board

Signature Examples*  
Buy and Sell: Jerome Hill
  For sale ads

Auction results*

  Wanted ads Auctions upcoming for him*  
  Dealers Auction sales graphs*  

What's my art worth?

Magazine ads pre-1998*  

Market Alert - Free

Lived/Active: Minnesota/California/New York / France/Italy      Known for: filmmaker, landscape painting, photography

Login for full access
View AskART Services

*may require subscription
James Jerome II Hill is primarily known as Jerome Hill

Available for Jerome Hill:

Quick facts (Styles, locations, mediums, teachers, subjects, geography, etc.) (Jerome Hill)


Biographical information (Jerome Hill)


Book references (Jerome Hill)


Auction records - upcoming / past (Jerome Hill)


Auction high record price (Jerome Hill)


Analysis of auction sales (Jerome Hill)


Discussion board entries (Jerome Hill)


Image examples of works (Jerome Hill)


Please send me Alert Updates for Jerome Hill (free)
What is an alert list?

Ad Code: 4
James Jerome II Hill
from Auction House Records.
Woman assaulted on Turkish
Artwork images are copyright of the artist or assignee
This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Jerome Hill was an American filmmaker and artist. He was born into the family of Louis W. and Maud Van Corlandt Hill, one of the prominent families of Saint Paul and heirs to the railroad fortune of James J. Hill, the famed “Empire Builder.”

He, the grandson of James J. Hill, attended St. Paul Academy where, as a student, he first demonstrated skill as an artist. He studied music at Yale University receiving a degree in music. As a student, he took many trips to New York City to see a variety of arts events. After graduation in 1927, he traveled to Europe where he began to study painting, and experiment with still photography and film. While painting landscapes in the south of France, Hill discovered and purchased a piece of property in Cassis, a scenic port town on the Mediterranean Sea.

Of his painting, he said: "I began to paint because Dad painted. . .when I was a small boy it didn't occur to me that there were people who didn't paint." (Szott, 11) By age 12, he was designing his own Christmas cards, which became a lifetime habit. At St. Paul's Academy he painted murals in the science and chemistry departments including one with a portrait of Albert Einstein.  In 1964, he returned to do repair work on the murals.  At Yale, he did caricatures and cartoons for the Yale Record.  In 1927, he spent a year of formal study of art in Rome at the British Academy of Art, and then studied for three years in Paris at the Academie Scandinave. Among his instructors were modernist painters Charles Dufresne, Othon Friesz and Marcel Gromaire.  Hill exhibited paintings between 1929 and 1937 at the Salon d'Automne and Salon des Tuilleries, and in 1938 he had a solo show at the Galerie Paquereau. His work was exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts annual shows of 1931 and 1934. In New York City, he had solo exhibitions at Carstairs Gallery in 1962, and Babcock Galleries in 1964, 1967, 1969 and 1972.  In 1965, the St. Paul Art Center hosted an exhibition as did the University of Minnesota in 1968. Posthumous exhibitions were held at Berry-Hill Galleries in New York City in 1965 and College of St. Catherine in St. Paul in 1979.

His painting was much influenced by the light-saturated terrain of the South of France, where he ultimately settled in Cassis. The painters he most admired were Pierre Bonnard and Edouard Vuillard, both whom reacted against Impressionism toward a more Symbolist style of flat pure colors.  Hill's mature style was one of competing patterns and repeated forms, and his subjects were typically still life and domestic scenes as well as landscapes. It was written that "many of his paintings incorporate doors, windows, and paintings that echo the windowlike nature of his compositions."(Szott, 13).  Framing was also a unifying principal that transferred to the many aspects of his creative life. He had a frame-by-frame approach to filmmaking and also in photography, through a series of stills to capture fragmented scenes and narratives.

Hill’s film endeavors began with Ski Flight (1938), a documentary and instructional film on downhill skiing. Filmed on location at Mt. Rainier in Washington state, and starring skier Otto Lang, the film premiered at Radio City Music Hall. A second documentary film The Seeing Eye (1939-40) profiled companion animals.

His artistic career was put on hold during WWII when he joined the military serving a variety of roles. He was assigned to a Tank Destroyer Battalion in 1942, and later served as a liaison officer with French forces. He also worked on the military motion picture team creating training films for the Army.

After the war, Hill continued to travel and paint for most of the 1940s. In 1949, he returned to documentary filmmaking with his portrait of American painter Grandma Moses, produced with cinematographer Erika Anderson. The film was nominated for an Academy Award and marked Hill’s creative partnership with Anderson that would produce the feature length documentary, Albert Schweitzer. The film won an Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature of 1957.

Hill made his first “story” film, The Sand Castle made in 1959-60. Inspired by Carl Jung and his theories of the subconscious, it was a comedy-fantasy in black and white with a dream sequence in color introducing a novel form of stop-motion animation. Jung’s ideas also motivated the full-length film Open The Door and See All the People (1964). Hill would create numerous notable films during his career that included Schweitzer and Bach, the hand-painted animation shorts: Anticorrida Merry Christmas, The Artist’s Friend, and The Canaries.

In 1971, Hill made his full-length autobiographical film, Film Portrait. An especially poignant cinematic work, Film Portrait was created after Hill had been diagnosed with an incurable cancer and was contemplating his legacy as an artist and philanthropist. The work was selected as an outstanding Film of the Year for presentation at the 1972 London Film Festival and won the Gold Dukat Prize at the 21st Annual Film Festival in Mannheim.

Jerome Hill’s life and career was largely defined by his support for the arts and humanities on an international level. In 1957 and 1958, he initiated a series of Performing Arts Festivals in Cassis. These festivals presented an array of European theatre professionals and Musicians that Hill helped support financially. In 1964, he founded a philanthropic foundation for the arts and humanities (Avon Foundation), which since 1973 has been known as the Jerome Foundation. He helped fund Film-Makers’ Cinematheque Film Culture magazine, and Cahiers du cinéma, and was involved in the Spoleto Festival in 1961 and the International Exposition of the New American Cinema.

After meeting with avant-garde filmmaker Jonas Mekas about the possibility of writing an article for one of his film publications, Mekas presented Hill with the idea of a museum devoted to the preservation and exhibition of film as art. This vision eventually became Anthology Film Archives, and would be considered Hill’s most important contribution to the cultivation of the visual arts. Realized through Hill’s financial and creative support, Anthology Film Archives opened on November 30, 1970 at Joseph Papp’s Theater. Hill was heavily involved with the organization up until his death in 1972. His work continues to be recognized for its importance to the history of cinema.

His short film La Cartomancienne (1932) was restored for the DVD collection Unseen Cinema: Early American Avant Garde Film 1894-1941 released in October 2005.

His most famous work was Film Portrait (1972), an autobiographical piece about the artist's own life, which won numerous awards and is one of only 450 films nominated for the National Film Registry at the Library of Congress.

Hill had a Chalet built at Sugar Bowl Ski Resort and while living there, paid for and operated "The Magic Carpet", the first aerial tramway on the west coast.

Just before his death in 1972, Jerome Hill narrated and produced an autobiographical film, Film Portrait, which he ended with these words: "For me the only real valid present is the eternal moment, seized and set down once and for all.  That is the creation of the artist." (Szott, 14)


Szott, Brian, Sheila Ffolliott, Marilyn Olson, George Slade and Linda Hoeschler, Jerome Hill: Beyond the Frame, exhibition catalogue, Minnesota Historical Society, September 10-2005-January 8, 2006.


This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Born in St. Paul, Minnesota, James Jerome Hill, known primarily as Jerome Hill,  was a mural painter who earned a B.A. Degree from Yale University in 1927. From 1927-28, he studied at the British Academy of Painting in Rome, Italy, and from 1928-32 at the Scandinavian Academy of Art in Paris.

His mural work included the St. Paul Academy and the Stations of the Cross for Our Lady of Mercy Chapel in Boca Grande, Florida.

He lived for a period in St. Paul, Minnesota, and then in Del Monte, California where he became a Director of motion pictures that included Grandma Moses and Merry Christmas.

Peter Hastings Falk, Editor, Who Was Who in American Art

** If you discover credit omissions or have additional information to add, please let us know at
  go to top home | site map | site terms | AskART services & subscriptions | contact | about us
  copyright © 2000-2015 AskART all rights reserved ® AskART and Artists' Bluebook are registered trademarks

  A |  B |  C |  D-E |  F-G |  H |  I-K |  L |  M |  N-P |  Q-R |  S |  T-V |  W-Z  
  frequently searched artists 1, 2, more...  
  art appraisals, art for sale, auction records, misc artists