New biography on noted artist

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A noted Skegness artist born in the late 19th century is the subject of a new illustrated biography, written by his great-niece.

Alfred Ernest White lived from 1873 to 1953 and spent the last 30 or so years of his life living and working in Skegness.

White was born in Lincoln where he attended the Lincoln School of Art, before becoming a ‘special artist’ for the Lincoln Leader and County Advertiser where he sketched a variety of subjects to accompany articles and reports.

However, White is perhaps best known for a satirical postcard he created inspired by a typhoid epidemic in Lincoln in 1905.

The piece, which was reproduced in a national newspaper, has led to him being known among postcard collecting circles as ‘The Typhoid Man’.

Following his move to Skegness, White lived with his wife Annie at 121 Roman Bank, where she opened The Little Shop in their front room.

He also had a studio on the foreshore until the outbreak of the Second World War.

His output while in Skegness included oils and watercolours, postcards, sketches and full portraits, also painting miniature oil paintings on sea shells.

A new book written by his great-niece, Jean M Fanthorpe, from Lincoln, details White’s life.

Jean, who received a distinction for a master’s degree based on White’s works in 2005, said inspiration to write the book came from an early age.

“Growing up with some of his paintings on our walls, and hearing the memories of older family members of the time they had spent with their aunt and uncle Annie and Ernie White, I become very interested,” she said.

The book, Alfred Ernest White (1873-1953) - Truly A Lincolnshire Artist, is available in WH Smith, The Village Church Farm and Lyndhurst Garden Centre, in Skegness.