John Gill is widely considered to be the father of modern bouldering and responsible for the introduction of dynamic movement to the sport of climbing. Whilst his peers were looking to the big walls of Yosemite and Patagonia, Gill began to look to small, difficult climbs in the mid-1950s. With a background in gymnastics, he was interested in pushing the boundaries of what the human body was capable of on rock.
He placed emphasis on aesthetic form and grace of motion and challenged many of the norms held in the sport at the time. By 1959, he had climbed V9/7C and whilst he wasn't the first person to boulder, he certainly popularised the idea as a pursuit worthy in itself.
The American Alpine Club has taken a retrospective look at Gill's short, but influential bouldering years in this short film: