Let Us Now Praise America’s Workers
Art Business

Let Us Now Praise America’s Workers

Dessie Higgenbottom Proprietress Dessie’s Bar & Grill, Pocahontas, VA 1974. Photo courtesy of the Grohmann Museum. Photographer David Plowden ’s subjects are deckhands, ship captains, railroad engineers, ranchers, factory workers, and restaurant and clothing store owners with one thing in common: pride in their chosen occupation. His black-and-white photographs capture the heart of blue collar America over nearly half a century Plowden’s “Portraits of Work” exhibition which features dozens of photographs taken at locations across the United States, is now on display at the Milwaukee School of Engineering ’s Grohmann Museum. “This was a great opportunity for us to take another look at his work over the past five or six decades,” said James R. Kieselburg II , museum director. He noted that “Portraits of Work,” which will be donated to the Grohmann by Plowden when the exhibition ends, is a fitting addition to the museum, the only one in the United States which specializes in artwork portraying human labor, occupations and production. Now in his late 80s, Plowden has been fascinated by industry from an early age, particularly railways and steamships. The photographer is largely known for his landscapes of factories and steel mills and has produced more […]

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