Winslow Homer noticed Kroll’s talent and encouraged him to follow his gift of painting. Kroll won a scholarship to study at the Academie Julian in Paris. The Grand Prix was awarded to him after one year.
Kroll befriended the circle of artists known as the “Eight.” This group was recognized as painters of urban realism. Kroll began exhibiting with them at the MacDowell club. He participated in the 1913 Armory Show that became famous for being the first American show to introduce modern art to the public. John Sloan and Robert Henri invited him to Santa Fe to paint.
His painting was shaped early on by realism. Though Kroll painted landscapes and still lifes, the single, constant theme of his work was the female form. He had distinguished commissions such as murals for the Department of Justice building, the John Hopkins University and the mosaic dome at the U.S. Military Cemetery at Omaha Beach.
Kroll taught and lectured at such prestigious institutions as the National Academy of Design, the Pennsylvania Academy, and the Chicago Art Institute.
His work is in collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the National Collection of Fine Arts.