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Photo by: Nina Howell Starr 

Minnie Evans: Visionary Artist is a documentary in production that explores the mystical visions and brilliant artwork of Minnie Evans (1892-1987) 

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This is the story of Minnie Evans whose artistic mastery of a lifetime of visionary dreaming is now recognized on a world-wide stage by art collectors. Born in 1892 in rural coastal North Carolina at a time of racial oppression of her community, Evans worked for decades as the gatekeeper of Airlie Gardens on Wrightsville Sound, NC. In the small wooden gatehouse, she produced hundreds of paintings and drawings. She gave her pictures to people who admired her work, and eventually hung them up near the gatehouse, selling them for a tiny fraction of what her work brings at art auctions today. Working with simple crayon and pencil, Evans’ unique drawings combine exquisitely colored forms and elements of nature and spirituality into her own awe-inspiring creations. 

“This art that I have put out has come from nations I suppose might have been destroyed before the flood...No one know anything about them, but God has given it to me to bring them back into the world." - Minnie Evans

Deep in the archives of the Smithsonian lies a 300-page transcript of conversations between self-taught, African American visionary artist Minnie Evans and photographer Nina Howell Starr, both now deceased. Through these original audio recordings, Minnie's voice sheds light on her life and artistic process. Employing details from her surrealist drawings and paintings, archival photos, archives and landscapes that inspired her visions, we experience her mysterious and spiritual dream world. Along the way, we learn how these two extraordinary women of different races and backgrounds became close and loving friends. "Minnie Evans: Visionary Artist" introduces to a wider audience one of the most important American artists of the 20th century.


In honoring Minnie Evans (1892-1987) as one of the greatest artists of the 20th century. We greatly appreciate your support in any amount to support production and filming in 2023.  Click below to donate online at SDF.

Contribution are tax-deductible through the film's 501c3 fiscal sponsor Southern Documentary Fund (SDF).

OR Write check to Southern Documentary Fund. ***In MEMO line please write for "MINNIE EVANS: VISIONARY ARTIST." Mail to: Southern Documentary Fund, P.O. Box 3622, Durham NC 27702

Please email us at bythebrookfilms(at) re: donations so we can thank you and add you to our donor list!

Photo: Cape Fear Museum

E. Penton_Blaire CAM.jpg

Photo by: Nuri Muhammed

African-American, Southern and self-taught, Evans's paintings and drawings belong among America's famous artists and provide a spiritual antidote to our contemporary divisive times.

Dr. Elizabeth Penton, Art History adjunct instructor UNC-Wilmington, seen here with Blaire Johnson, DP at the Minnie Evans Study Center, Cameron Art Museum in Wilmington, NC.

Thanks to our DONORS

Last updated 01/06/22


Olympia Stone, Floating Stone Productions


Contributing Producer

Annie Gray Sprunt


Production possible with the support of

The Arts Council of Wilmington & NHC,  Wendy Williams


Additional Funding by

The Arts Council of Wilmington & NHC, Janie & Carter Lambeth

John Clark & Mary Boney Denison, David Dyer, Janet Kenworthy

Jennifer Kraner & Tony Chambers, Molly Matlock, Steve Tretrault, Doug & Liling Warren

Thanks to: 

Christian Daniel, Louise & Matt Scharf, Paul & Maureen Baron, Molly Brooks, Jean Capps, Liz Coffey, Beverly Evans, Norris & Louise Evans, Mary & Deanes Gornto, Bonnie Monteleone, 

David & Marsha Warren, Heather Wilson

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