Rock Pool is one of the first works Hilton painted in St Ives following his decision to move to Cornwall late in 1956. By this time his severely abstract phase of the early 1950s was drawing to an end. As 'January 1957' demonstrates, Hilton's painting became more improvisatory and expressionistic; so much so that it was selected for the Redfern Gallery Metavisual, Tachiste, Abstract: Painting in England Today exhibition.
Hilton used a range of techniques, including brush and drawing straight from the paint tube. The move towards more muted, earthy colour and solid, organic form is also apparent. These changes were no doubt inspired by the shapes and colours of the Cornish landscape. Although the title is not inscribed on the present lot, we can accurately affirm its title as Rock Pool, due to the confirmation on the original receipt which is included with this lot.