Painter John Allin was born into a Jewish family in London, England in 1934; home was the East End, then supporting a large and thriving Jewish community, memories of which would later inspire his art. He joined the Merchant Navy when still in his teens and travelled the world; served in the army in North Africa during National Service, then worked in a variety of jobs including in a park planting trees, then as a swimming pool attendant and finally, as a long-distance lorry driver. While serving a six-month prison sentence (for the receipt of three stolen shirts) he began to paint, afterwards devoting himself entirely to his artistic career. In 1969 he had his first exhibition at the Portal Gallery, and in 1979 he was the first British artist to win the international Prix Suisse Du Peinture Naïve award. Allin made his mark within what is today considered the Folk/Outsider Art movement in Britain. Later in life, he spent three years with a circus team producing a series of paintings based on circus life. His first book, 'Say Goodbye: You May Never See Them Again' (1974), was produced with Stepney-born Jewish playwright Arnold Wesker, who also introduced his series of eight Stepney prints. John Allin died in London, England in 1991. His work is in UK public collections including the Ben Uri Collection, which holds a complete set of his Stepney prints.