Walker Evans: Behind the Facade

21 - 24 March 2016

James Hyman Gallery is delighted to present an exhibition of twenty five classic works by Walker Evans, one of the greatest American photographers of the twentieth-century. All the photographs originate from the Museum of Modern Art in Oxford, which acquired these photographs at the time of their exhibition of Evans in 1976 and recently sold them.

This Oxford exhibition was held with the blessing of Walker Evans, who had hoped to attend, and was organised by the eminent curator of photographs, John Szarkowski, of MoMA, New York. In addition to photographs borrowed from MoMA, New York and from the Estate of Walker Evans, the Museum of Modern Art, Oxford also purchased prints from the Library of Congress in Washington.

For collectors of photography, both new and well established, this represents an opportunity to own Walker Evans prints of high quality and exceptional provenance.

James Hyman comments:
"Walker Evans iconic photographs of depression era America are some of the most acclaimed images of the twentieth century. I'm delighted to provide this opportunity to acquire beautiful, later, prints by Walker Evans of such great images, at such reasonable prices."
About the Artist:

Walker Evans began experimenting with photography in the late 1920s, and spent his early career photographing the streets of New York, using high and low angles, patterns of light and shadow and various compositions. Evans gradually moved away from this highly aestheticised style, soon securing a reputation as America's preeminent documentary photographer, powerfully and precisely describing the plight of the Americans hit hardest during The Great Depression.

In 1935, Evans was hired as an information specialist by the Farm Security Administration (FSA), which developed aid programs for impoverished farmers during the Depression years. FSA photographers were assigned to document small-town life and their images were subsequently used as evidence of the extreme poverty in rural United States. It was during this time that Evans created his most important and significant work, partly for the FSA and partly with the writer, James Agee, for Fortune. The latter project resulted in the ground-breaking book, 'Let Us Now Praise Famous Men' (1941). Evans' powerfully uncomplicated images of rural tenant farmers, and the sites and relics of their meagre existence, soon became iconic.

Evans continued to work for FSA until 1938. His captivating images earned him the first exhibition of a solo photographer's work ever to be held at The Museum of Modern Art, New York.

In 1976, just months after Walker Evans' death, the Museum of Modern Art in Oxford staged a major exhibition of his photographs. In addition to prints from the Museum of Modern Art, New York, and from the Estate of Walker Evans, the Museum of Modern Art in Oxford acquired photographs from the Library of Congress, Washington. Although he didn't live to see the final show, Evans' himself was closely involved in the planning of this exhibition.

About James Hyman Gallery:

James Hyman Gallery is the UK's foremost commercial gallery for vintage 19th and 20th century photography. The gallery holds a substantial inventory of rare and museum-quality vintage photographs from the early days of British and French photography, through European and American Modernism, to the present day.

The gallery is a leading specialist in British Photography and represents many of the most important British photographers working today, especially those engaged in forms of subjective or contemporary documentary practice. Contemporary British photographers represented include: Anna Fox, Ken Grant, Mark Power, Andy Sewell and Jon Tonks. The gallery also works with the Estate of Andre Kertész and is proud to represent the celebrated French New Wave photographer Raymond Cauchetier.

James Hyman Gallery is also a market leader in 20th century British art, specialising in 20th century paintings, especially by the Camden Town School, St Ives artists, Kitchen Sink painters and the School of London; sculpture, especially by the post-war Geometry of Fear Sculptors; British Pop Art; and limited edition prints. The gallery is proud to represent a select group of artists, including Dennis Creffield and Derrick Greaves, as well as the Estates of Michael Andrews, Peter de Francia, Robert Medley and Edward Middleditch.

About Dr. James Hyman:

James Hyman received his doctorate from the Courtauld Institute in London, where he subsequently taught. He worked for the Saatchi Collection, Christie's and Helly Nahmad Gallery before opening his own gallery in 1999. A respected academic and art historian, his book, The Battle for Realism. Figurative Art in Britain during the Cold War, 1945-1969 (Yale University Press, 2001) was shortlisted for the W.B. Berger Prize for studies in British Art History.

James Hyman is a world expert on Modern British art and photography from the early 19th century to the present day. He is a leading authority on, and supporter of, British photography and has recently launched a new educational website devoted to British photography.

For all press enquiries including images and interview requests please contact:

Kate@jameshymangallery.com 020 7494 3857