Photographer McNair Evans grew up in a small farming town in North Carolina. He discovered photography as an anthropology student at Davidson College (BA, 2001) while recording the oral history for an Appalachian family in Madison County, NC. McNair’s work explores themes of shared experiences and identity by photographing the American cultural landscape amidst forces of modernization. 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.
His first book, Confessions for a Son (Owl & Tiger, 2014), explores the lasting psychological landscape of his father’s death through a once successful, North Carolinian farming empire. His current project, photographed on Amtrak trains across America, follows that trajectory by combining original photography with first person, passenger-written accounts. The lives and stories of those traveling on passenger rail illuminate tensions between the individual and society’s expectations.
His 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, The San Francisco Chronicle, and The Financial Times. McNair Evans is a nationally exhibited artist, 2016 Guggenheim Fellow, an active guest lecturer at universities and institutions nationwide, and represented by commercial galleries in San Francisco, CA and Asheville, NC.