John William Hill American, born England

Not on view

Hill’s conversion in the late 1850s to the aesthetics of John Ruskin and the Pre-Raphaelites was manifested most notably in his still lifes. In 1857 Ruskin wrote enthusiastically about the broken-color, or stipple, watercolor technique used by William Henry (“Bird’s Nest”) Hunt, the British master whose still lifes of humble subjects Ruskin especially prized. This watercolor well illustrates how closely Hill followed the example of Hunt as interpreted by Ruskin, creating wonderful effects with Ruskin’s prescription of “interlaced touches of pure colours,” some emulsified with gouache.

Plums, John William Hill (American (born England), London 1812–1879 West Nyack, New York), Watercolor, graphite, and gouache on off-white Bristol board, American

Due to rights restrictions, this image cannot be enlarged, viewed at full screen, or downloaded.

Open Access

As part of the Met's Open Access policy, you can freely copy, modify and distribute this image, even for commercial purposes.


Public domain data for this object can also be accessed using the Met's Open Access API.