This resplendent volume is the most comprehensive study of Walker Evans’s work ever published, containing masterful images accompanied by authoritative commentary from leading photography historians.
The name Walker Evans conjures images of the American everyman. Whether it’s his iconic contributions to James Agee’s depression-era classic book, "Let Us Now Praise Famous Men", his architectural explorations of antebellum plantations, or his subway series, taken with a camera hidden in his coat, Evans’s accessible and eloquent photographs speak to us all. This comprehensive book traces the entire arc of Evans’s remarkable career, from the 1930’s to the 1970’s. The illustrations in the book range from his earliest images taken with a vest pocket camera, to his final photos using the then new SX-70 because his regular equipment became too heavy to carry around. The book includes commentary from three of Evans’s longtime friends, photographers Alan Trachtenberg, Jerry Thompson and John T. Hill. Their insight and first-hand experience give depth to their critical writings on Evans’s work. In addition to offering a broad perspective on Evans’ work, the book also clarifies the photographer’s “anti-art” philosophy. Eschewing aesthetic hyperbole, Evans wanted his pictures to resonate with a wide audience. At the same time, his natural curiosity made him one of the most inventive photographers of all time. What these photographs and writings attest to is a huge and timeless talent, which came not from a camera, but from Evans’s uniquely hungry eye.