Hugo Ballin (1879-1956) was born in New York City. He began his Hollywood career creating motion picture sets for Samuel Goldwyn
and later worked as a director and producer. He ultimately gave up his film career to focus on art and writing. The collection
consists of original paintings and drawings by Ballin, correspondence, literary manuscripts, books, clippings, and photographs.
Hugo Ballin was born March 7, 1879 in New York City. He attended the Art Students League in New York, spent several years
traveling and studying in Italy, and became a portrait painter. In 1917, he began working as an art director for Goldwyn Pictures
and subsequently moved to California in 1921. In the 1920s, he began writing, producing, and directing films, and formed his
own production company, Hugo Ballin Productions, Inc. Ballin's wife, actress Mabel Croft Ballin, was featured in his silent
film adaptations of literary classics, such as Jane Eyre (1921) and Vanity Fair (1923). With the advent of talking pictures,
Ballin retired from film to focus on painting and writing. As a noted muralist, he completed a number of significant commissioned
works across the country during the course of his career, including murals at the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles and
at the State Capitol in Madison, Wisconsin. He designed a seventeen-foot medallion of Pallas Athena which hung over the entrance
to the 1932 Olympics in Los Angeles. He also published several novels, including The Woman at the Door (1925), Stigma (1928),
and Dolce Far Niente (1933). Ballin was a member of the National Institute of Arts and Letters and the National Academy of
Design. He lived in Pacific Palisades until he died in 1956.
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