This painting is one from a series Hillier designed themed 'Fossils, Insects and Reptiles', produced for the Shell prestige advertising campaigns. These were used as press adverts, school wall charts and book illustrations. Tristram Hillier was born in Peking and studied at the Slade School of Art and then in Paris, where he met and was influenced by the Surrealist painters. He became a member of the Unit One group in 1934. After his first one-man show at the Lefevre Gallery in 1931 Hillier’s work was popular with the picture-buying public and he went on to show widely in Britain and abroad. After he finished his studies until 1940 he travelled widely on the continent, often living alone for several months in Spain, France and Portugal, his scenes of sparsely populated villages or townships under a bleaching sun being developed during the winter months in Somerset where he had his home. He was elected RA in 1967.
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Nature in Art
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on loan from the Shell Art Collection, since 2000 (P)