Gift of Sonya Trotter Hill and the artist, 2014.
Dimensions: 20 x 16
Shortly after the birth of his son, Skip Hill began using the "Dream Sower" motif, a barefoot boy with a crown tossing seeds. The artist uses the imagery as a metaphor for planting dreams and aspirations, while maintaining a hope for a harvest even in the most trying of circumstances. Papillon is the French word for butterfly. In this painting, which includes collaged elements form many sources, Hill uses the images of butterflies rising in the sky.
Robert Terrence "Skip" Hill documents his experiences in painted collage works which harvest imagery and design elements from various cultures, languages, art history, and popular culture in captivating collage works. Using African textiles, Mexican ritual motifs, Asian calligraphy, Hill creates lyrical images that illustrate his inner vision and outward perception.
Desire to travel has taken Hill all over the world from Mexico, Thailand, and the Netherlands, Morocco, to Brazil. Those travels and the vast amount of culture Hill has absorbed transfers into his artwork with a surge of international flavor and threads of folk art, jazz, graffiti, and urban motifs.
Born and raised in Texas, Hill's talent in art earned him a scholarship to attend Oklahoma City University to study art. He produced award-winning political cartoons for the campus newspaper before taking a break from school to work in the advertising field. He worked as an illustrator, graphic designer, and creative director, producing radio and television commercials for McDonald's before relocating to Southern California. From there, Hill began to travel regularly, create, and exhibit art all over the world.
After residing in the Netherlands for three years and learning to speak Dutch fluently, Hill relocated to Atlanta, Georgia. With a dream in his heart, yet no resources, he spent several months living in shelters and on the streets of downtown Atlanta. Battling depression, Hill spent this time writing, but produced little art. From there, Hill traveled to Alabama and reunited with his estranged father who introduced him to the work of black outsider artists such as Lonnie Holley, Jimmie Lee Sudduth, and Mose Tolliver. This reawakened Hill's creativity and he began creating art again.
In the mid-1990s, Hill returned to Oklahoma, claiming it at his home. He attended the University of Oklahoma and studied under Native American conceptual artist Edgar Heap of Birds and abstract painter George Bogart.
In 2006, Hill received the Margaret M. Dabney Visual Arts Award for Outstanding Achievements from the Black Liberated Arts Center in Oklahoma City. Today, Hill's artwork can be found in private and public collections in the United States, United Kingdom, France, Argentina, Brazil, Columbia, and the Netherlands.