David Plowden was born on October 9, 1932. He attended The Putney School in Vermont and graduated from Yale University in 1955. After working briefly for the Great Northern Railway, he began to pursue his career in photography.
From 1957 through1962 Plowden studied under Minor White and Nathan Lyons, and was an assistant to O. Winston Link and George Meluso. He 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. Plowden was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1968, and a Research Grant from the Smithsonian Institute in 1970, to name a few, and is author of more than twenty photography books.
Plowden's work is currently included in the permanent collection of many art museums, including the Smithsonian Institute, George Eastman House, Center for Creative Photography, Art Institute of Chicago and Library of Congress. 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.
For more than fifty years Plowden has continued to generate new work and to produce new exhibitions, books and other publications. The photographs from David Plowden's Iowa, published in 2012, are currently display in a traveling exhibit which runs through 2014 (see Exhibitions page for more details). He lives in Winnetka, Illinois.
David Plowden 2007, photo copyright © 2007 by Russell Phillips Photography
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All material on this website copyright © 1955-2013 by David Plowden – All rights reserved.