Last night I visited a special memorial screening of “The Films of Hillman Curtis” in the SVA Theatre in New York City. It included some of his friends such as Stefan Sagmeister, Paula Scher, or Michael Godere, one of the main actors of the short film “Bridge”. The event featured some of his best short films and documentaries from the last decade.
One of the highlights was an excerpt from his last movie “The Happy Film”, which he mentioned in his interview this year. The audience was relatively young, and very interested and inspired by his movies – much of the digital world remembers him from his web design fame, when he reset the standard for modern web design.
Seeing his movies in a large movie theater made one characteristic pretty clear – he had the ability to fade into the background, and let the artist or actor fully express him or herself. The portraits of Milton Glaser or Paula Scher become a lot more amplified on a large screen, and show his ability to document distinct inspiration that will continue to influence generations to come.
Hillman’s way to distribute his movies was to make them public over the internet, meaning you can emerge into his world of short movies by yourself. Here is a list of movies that were featured that night.
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