Francis Archibald Wentworth Walter, self-styled 7th Prince of the West Indies, Lord of Follies and the Ding-a-Ding Nook, was born in Antigua in 1926. Prodigiously talented as both a writer and artist, his undeniable genius was flawed by delusions of aristocratic grandeur, namely a belief that the white slave owners in his ancestry linked him to the noble houses of Europe, from Charles II to Franz Joseph of Austria and the Dukes of Buccleuch.
His gifts were the product of a fertile, but fragile, mind he spent the last twenty five years of his life in an isolated shack on an Antiguan hillside, surrounded by his writings (some 25,000 closely-typed pages of history, philosophy and autobiography) and by the extraordinary paintings and carvings that speak with such an unmistakable voice and which announce the discovery of one of the most intriguing and distinctive Caribbean artists of the last 50 years.
The exhibition is the most comprehensive view yet of Frank Walter the artist; assembled from private collections, and from the artist’s estate. Among the highlights of the exhibition are Walter's figure paintings - including his bizarre vision of what might have happened if Hitler should have visited the Caribbean and his Tiny Landscapes, of which he painted hundreds, always a precise 10 by 8.5 cm on a rectangle of card cut from the back of a box of Polaroid film. Many of these were influenced by a visit to Scotland in the early 1950s, which marked the beginnings of a life-long affection for the country.