North Carolina native McNair Evans photographs the American cultural landscape, exploring themes of shared experience and identity as well as the forces of modernization and those individuals most impacted by these changes. His work presents personal, sometimes autobiographical, subject matter in unconventional narrative form and has been recognized for its literary character and metaphoric use of light.
McNair’s first monograph, Confessions for a Son, 2014, explores the lasting psychological landscape of his father’s death through his family’s once successful North Carolina farming enterprise. His subsequent project In Search of Great Men follows a similar trajectory depicting the lives and stories of those traveling on passenger rail. Evans combines original photographs with first person passenger-written accounts, illuminating tensions between the individual and society’s expectations.
Evans photographs are held in major public and private collections, including the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and his work has been featured in numerous exhibition settings and editorial publications including Harper’s Magazine, The New Yorker, The Wall Street Journal, and The San Francisco Chronicle, as well as on the cover of William Faulkner’s novel, Flags in the Dust. Evans is 2016 Guggenheim Fellow.
This lecture is supported by the generosity of the Triplette Foundation and the School of Art through which renowned photographers are brought to campus annually to lecture and meet with students to discuss current issues in photography.