Obituary: Jaro Hilbert
Friday 14 April 1995
"I hope to become a centenarian," Jaro Hilbert told his students several months ago while he was sorting out his oil paintings and water-colours for a retrospective later this year. He was just three months short of his 98th birthday when he died.
Born at Krsko, Slovenia, of Czech parents, Hilbert started painting when he was eight years old, and after 10 years of vigorous study at the Prague Academy he astonished his family and compatriots when, in 1926, he chose Egypt as his future permanent base. For nearly 40 uninterrupted years he worked along the Nile Valley and in Palestine, capturing on large canvases the unique colours of the Middle East: the gold and red of the Mediterranean dawns and sunsets against the bright blue of the sky.
One of his most famous works during this period was The Last Supper, much admired by the Holy See and frequently exhibited in the Vatican. Its originality consisted in presenting the Apostles as typical Semitic types, Jewish and Arab. The work influenced a generation of Egyptian artists.
Greatly impressed by the monumentalilty of Corot's landscapes, Hilbert settled in 1962 at Ville de'Avray, near Paris. He transformed the Orangerie of the old chteau into a vast studio and, for the next 30 years, continued to interpret the elusive moods of nature.
His last large exhibition was held at the Mme de Pompadour Pavilion at the palace of Versailles. He had also recently painted all the bridges of Paris.
- 1 Nigel Farage: Me vs Russell Brand on Question Time – he's got the chest hair but where are his ideas?
- 2 Harry Potter fans can apply to the Hogwarts-inspired College of Wizardry
- 3 Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
- 4 Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
- 5 Orange Wednesdays are no more
Weather bomb in pictures: Storms cuts power for tens of thousands – and snow is on the way
Jessica Chambers: 19-year-old woman 'doused with lighter fluid and burned alive' in the US
Russell Brand calls Nigel Farage 'poundshop Enoch Powell' in BBC Question Time debate
Russell Brand was rendered speechless on Question Time by this man
Fury at Airbus after it hints the super-jumbo may be mothballed
Disgruntled RBS worker writes hilarious open letter to Russell Brand after anti-capitalist publicity stunt leaves him hungry
Nigel Farage defends Kerry Smith 'ch***y' comment: 'If you are going for a Chinese, what do you say you’re going for?'
Nigel Farage's approval rating hits 'record low' as popularity suffers in wake of Ukip sex scandal
Rozanne Duncan: Ukip expels councillor for 'jaw-dropping' comments made in BBC TV interview
Pakistan school attack live: Taliban kill at least 132 children in 'horrifying' massacre
Sony hack: Angelina Jolie branded 'seriously out of her mind' in further embarrassing leaked email saga
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: They are in need of a HR Manage...
£35000 - £40000 per annum + £65,000 OTE: h2 Recruit Ltd: London, Birmingham, M...