(The photographs were shot during 1970-1971 across all of ...)
The photographs were shot during 1970-1971 across all of the Great Plains states from Montana south to New Mexico and Texas. There's a great variety of images impossible to summarize here, including white markers in the grass of the Little Big Horn, a full moon over bluffs, sunsets, abandoned farm buildings, vacant storefronts, cars and trucks parked in front of a bar, wheat fields, hayfields, windmills, an old tractor, railroad tracks, an endless freight train, riverbeds and dry water holes, stormy skies, badlands, the faces of rural people, and the backside of one cowboy sitting on the top rail of a fence. Plowden has caught the Great Plains in all kinds of moods and conditions, and the images just take your breath away.
(An accomplished photographer of the American scene presen...)
An accomplished photographer of the American scene presents a unique artistic record that captures a vanishing part of our country, the main streets, barbershops, schoolhouses, and inhabitants of our small towns. BOMC
(Whether built of stone, brick, wood, iron, steel, or conc...)
Whether built of stone, brick, wood, iron, steel, or concrete, bridges have captivated our imaginations more than any other man-made structures. In David Plowden's words, "there is no more overt, powerful, or rational expression of accomplishment - of man's ability to build." And Americans, in particular, have excelled in this structural art. This book explores in depth how, when, where, and by whom the most important North American bridges were built. Over 185 of Plowden's superb photographs allow us to dwell on the most important scientific and aesthetic qualities of each bridge.
(This beautiful volume is both a tribute to and a celebrat...)
This beautiful volume is both a tribute to and a celebration of the photographer who, more than anyone else, has given us a visual record of our mark on the land over the last half-century. David Plowden’s beautiful black-and-white images reveal his great respect for man’s ingenuity and honest work, documenting a disappearing landscape of the industry, small towns, wonderful devices, and noble structures.
(Stunning photographs by a master photographer documenting...)
Stunning photographs by a master photographer documenting the last of the steam locomotives. As a child, David Plowden was given a box camera, and before long he began to photograph railroad trains. As he matured and started on what would become a lifetime in photography, trains - specifically steam locomotives - became one of his passions, and then they were eclipsed by modern diesel locomotives.
(Fields of wheat, grain, and corn, farms, and grain elevat...)
Fields of wheat, grain, and corn, farms, and grain elevators became the subjects of his photographs. The best of his work over the past thirty-five years is presented here, impeccably reproduced in a generous format that does justice to the work of one of America’s foremost photographers and printmakers.
David Plowden earned a Bachelor of Arts from Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, in 1955. After working for the Great Northern Railway in 1959, he studied under Minor White and Nathan Lyons and was an assistant to O. Winston Link and George Meluso.
David Plowden has held various teaching positions at Illinois Institute of Technology - Institute of Design, University of Iowa - School of Journalism, University of Baltimore, and Grand Valley State University. He has been an associate professor at the Institute of Design, Illinois Institute of Technology since 1978.
In 1995, David Plowden agreed to transfer the entire archive of his notes, negatives, and prints to the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library at Yale University at the end of his career.
In 2017, the Milwaukee School of Engineering Grohmann Museum exhibited his Steel: The Cycle of Industry collection and repackaged a photo book of the same name, which chronicles steel from its start as taconite pellet mines in Minnesota to the blast furnaces of Gary, Indiana, and from its shipment across the Great Lakes to the demise of the mills in places like Lackawanna, NY.
Plowden's photographs are characterized by their stark detail. In the steel mill photos, he attributed this to shots he would overexpose and underdevelop.
(An accomplished photographer of the American scene presen...)1994
(This beautiful volume is both a tribute to and a celebrat...)2007
(Whether built of stone, brick, wood, iron, steel, or conc...)2001
(The photographs were shot during 1970-1971 across all of ...)1972
(Fields of wheat, grain, and corn, farms, and grain elevat...)2013
(Stunning photographs by a master photographer documenting...)2010
Quotes from others about the person
Alan Trachtenberg (from the Introduction of Imprints): "The beauty to which Plowden’s eye often witnesses, and to which his art pledges its allegiance, gives a measure of the indignation aroused by scenes of beauty profaned and civility eclipsed. Taken individually, one at a time, Plowden’s pictures refresh the eye; they instruct, they remind, they warn, they engage us in dialogue about the state of our world. Cumulatively, they provide a memorable legacy of American imprints in their own right."
Keith F. Davis, Senior Curator of Photography at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, MO: "He also shows us farmers, mechanics, and shop owners - the region’s dignified and resilient inhabitants. These images present a rich portrait of a way of life, a state of mind."
In July 1977, David Plowden married Sandra (née Schoellkopf). He lives in Winnetka, Illinois.