Edinburgh’s Ingleby Gallery presents the first exhibition devoted to Frank Walter’s ‘spools’ – small, circular paintings which provide a kind of lens through which to witness the workings of the late artist’s inner eye. Antigua-born, Frank Walter’s art was unrecognised during his lifetime (1926-2009), but since his death he has emerged as one of the most distinctive and intriguing Caribbean voices of the last 50 years. Painted on whatever material came to hand, his works describe a visionary artist in the manner of William Blake or Hilma af Klint, but rooted in the landscape of his island home. His work was the subject of Antigua and Barbuda’s inaugural appearance at the Venice Biennale in 2017, with the Swiss art curator, critic and art historian Hans Ulrich Obrist describing him as ‘the Leonardo da Vinci of Antigua’.
Art historian and chronicler of Walter’s life Barbara Paca noted: ‘Walter’s use of a round format is a distinct choice loaded with symbolism. Circles represent the cyclical, infinite nature of existence. Throughout his artistic practice, Walter, in effect, is striking the balance between the universe’s larger patterns and the smaller details of lived experience.’