Plowden's Lens  September 24, 2018

A Video by Audlank Media, NFP Heartland

Profoundly moving. Glorious. A national treasure. Only a few of the accolades describing photographer David Plowden's body of work. Take just 7 minutes to listen, and you'll better understand why not just Yale University, the Smithsonian and Humanities Iowa have paid attention to him. As Americans, we all can learn from David, as he captures a sense of who we were.


To watch this video click here.

Slagging Ingots, Steel Mill, East Chicago, Indiana, 1979 © David Plowden

The Story: American Public Media, October 30, 2013

Disappearing America: Dick Gordon interviews David Plowden

David Plowden has been photographing America for decades. His passion for steel bridges, corn fields, boats and steam engines is almost tactile in the photographs he takes.


He talks with Dick Gordon about what has stopped him from taking photos: namely, the feeling that the America he knew is gone, and with it, many of the people he photographed with such admiration.


To listen click here.



David Plowden's Iowa: Conversation with David Plowden, November 2011​​

"David Plowden spent the afternoon of November 2, 2011 in conversation about his life as a photographer and his experiences photographing Iowa. This interview, (link to excerpts below), forms part of an initiative between Humanities Iowa and The University of Iowa Digital Studio for the Public Humanities to showcase New Media approaches to conventional exhibition practices."    

— from Humanities Iowa website


Chapter 1,  Chapter 2,  Chapter 3,   Chapter 4,   Chapter 5,   Chapter 6,  

Chapter 7,  Chapter 8,   Chapter 9,    Chapter 10,   Chapter 11,   Chapter 12

Studio 360: Public Radio International, December 17, 2010


Requiem for Steam: Kurt Andersen interviews David Plowden

..." Plowden's travels by train eventually led him to the Midwest, where he made a distinguished career capturing the beautiful expanses of the Great Plains, as well as the desolate railroad towns the once welcomed the railways.


Requiem for Steam is Plowden's love letter to the steam engine, full of moving portraits of the machinery, the rails, and the people he's met on a lifetime of journeys."



To listen click here.

Farm and Road, Central Iowa, 2011 © David Plowden

Talk of Iowa, November 6, 2013

Photographing the Heartland

For more than 50 years photographer David Plowden has been capturing images of American and the land he loves most is here in the Midwest. Host Charity Nebbe talks with Plowden about his latest book "Heartland: The Plains and the Prairie." *

*From Iowa Public Radio Website


To listen to this interview from Iowa Public Radio click here.



David Plowden: Light, Shadow & Form, Grand Rapids, MI: WGVU Productions, ©1999.


Emmy Award winning hour-long documentary narrated by Bill Kutis

For more than 40 years, David Plowden has been photographing the changing face of America -- an old church, the whisper of smoke from a steam engine and a glimpse of a face behind a curtain. Narrated by Bill Kurtis, this program examines the life and work of this internationally known photographer, taking viewers into the world of a driven artist.


To watch now click here.

To find it from a library click here.


To purchase click here.

Columbia College Chicago Library,  November 19, 2013

An Evening With David Plowden: A Conversation About Heartland

The Museum of Contemporary Photography at Columbia College Chicago and the Columbia College Chicago Library present An Evening with David Plowden, in conversation with Natasha Egan, Director of the MoCP.


To listen to this interview click here.

Humanities Iowa, October 14, 2010

Voices from the Prairie: The Annual Iowa Writers' Celebration 2010

Featuring David Plowden, essayist and renowned documentary photographer of small towns, farmlands, and steam engines.


Mr. Plowden appeared in Sioux City on Thursday, October 14 at 6:30 PM at Cargill Auditorium at Western Iowa Tech Community College, in which this video took place. He also appeared in Council Bluffs and Iowa City.


To watch this video click here.

Grain Elevators Dedham, IA, 2008 © David Plowden

The Iowa History Center at Simpson College, March 14, 2013

David Plowden's Iowa

David Plowden and Chris Rossi discuss "David Plowden's Iowa" at Simpson College for the Iowa History Center's Spring Speaker Series Program. Topics include Plowden's youth, black and white photography, stories of subject matter, questions from the audience, and more.


To listen to this discussion click here.


History Corps, June 7, 2013

He also sat down with the History Corps for an extended interview. Listen for a window into the mind of a man two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning historian David McCullough calls “one of the great artists of our time.”


To listen to this interview click here.