Sir James Thornhill: A Self-portrait of a Civic Artist Sir James Thornhill painted the magnificent ceiling and west wall in the Painted Hall, but who was he? Discover the real Sir James Thornhill in this free talk. Explore the fascinating history of Sir James Thornhill, artist of the spectacular Painted Hall and discover his masterpiece, influences and life as a public figure. Talks take place at 12.00 and 15.00. Booking for this event has now closed.