Born in Lehi, Utah, Edwin Evans was an important early Utah landscape painter. He was trained in Salt Lake City by pioneer painters Dan Weggeland and George M. Ottinger and later called on an LDS art mission in Paris, France.
Together with John Hafen, J. B. Fairbanks, Lorus Pratt, Evans studied the academic painting tradition in the Académie Julian. Upon his return to Utah he participated in painting murals for the nearly completed Salt Lake Temple as well as the temple in Cardston, Alberta.
Together with John Hafen and James Taylor Harwood, Evans established the Academy of Art in Salt Lake City. Later, Evans was appointed President of the Institute of Fine Arts at the University of Utah, where he taught for nearly twenty years. Among his most famous students was noted Utah painter LeConte Stewart.