The Spy is always interested in knowing what Barbara Paca is up to. The Oxford-based scholar, designer, and curator of the recent and highly successful art exhibition celebrating the life and work of the Talbot County artist Ruth Starr Rose has now turned up at the Venice Biennale for a few months to bring a well-deserved spotlight on another underappreciated artist from the early 1920s. In this case, it’s the Antiguan artist, Frank Walter.
Known by some as the 7th Prince of the West Indies and Lord of Follies, Walter born in Antigua in 1926. Tracing his lineage back to the slaves of sugar plantation owners, he produced remarkable portraits of island life as he worked his way into being the first black man there to manage a sugarcane plantation.
Paca’s interest of Walter’s work led to the installation of Frank Walter, The Last Universal Man (1926-2009) in the Biennale this year. Pulling together his paintings, sculpture, audio recordings, and writing, it marks Antigua and Barbuda’s inaugural representation at the legendary Venice event.
The Spy got a few postcards from her to share the other day.