New Videos

Beginning in October, Helen has produced and posted three new video programs. Two are of her Pocahontas County farm tenant, Abram Frank, harvesting organic black beans and organic corn. The third is a celebration of autumn and the winter solstice at her urban farm in Ames.

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Video Update

Today, Helen posted an updated version of the video “Springtime in Ames” that she premiered last week on Vimeo. The program is a work-in-progress with footage from Helen’s urban farm in early spring 2021 that features her 10 laying hens and is enhanced with music that Emily Anderson of Story City originally created in 2009 for Helen to use with home movies she prepared for the 90th birthday of her father, Deane Gunderson.

View and listen to the video →

Panel Discussion: The Changing Face of Iowa Farming

The Iowa State University Museums hosted an on-line panel discussion titled “The Changing Face of Iowa Farming” on April 13, 2021. Panelists included academics and practicing Iowa farmers: Hannah Breckbill, Shelley Buffalo, Dr. Angie Carter and Patti Naylor. Associate museum curator, Adrienne Gennett, moderated the program that had been created to examine “the history and future of indigenous, queer, and female farmers working the land while developing more sustainable farming practices in Iowa” and was an extension of the museum’s exhibition, Compelling Ground, a meditation on Iowa’s landscapes, environments and peoples. Many of the panelists’ ideas are similar to ones Helen addresses in her book but broader, more deeply studied, and more prophetic than what Helen offers.  The perspectives of all, however, make an excellent mosaic of commentary that needs to be heard, impact land use policies and practices, and create awareness of issues of food sovereignty. The University Museums has posted a recording of the discussion on its YouTube channel.

View and listen to the discussion →

Book is Sold Out

Helen has distributed the last of the 100 sets of her book that she had printed and bound at the end of 2020. She is considering ordering a second run of the book but will decide on a plan in which she probably will wait until a sufficient number of people commit to buying the book before she places her order. Check back for further information about her plans. If interested in obtaining a set of the books, write to her and tell her your intentions. Thanks.

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Archive of Author Talk Available on YouTube

The Iowa State University Parks Library and Ames Public Library hosted a Zoom author event, featuring Helen and her book, The Road I Grew Up On, on March 24, 2021. Daniel Hartwig, head of ISU Special Collections and University Archives, hosted the discussion that included commentary by ISU Professor Emerita of Sociology, Dr. Cornelia Flora. An archived recording of the hour long discussion is now available on YouTube.

View and listen to the discussion →

More Videos Uploaded to Vimeo

Helen recently posted nine videos from her archives on Vimeo and listed them in her video index. They are ones that she considers to be more documentary, essay, or program-like from her YouTube collection of 88 posts that include many that are more akin to home movies, albeit home movies that have high production value, including music. She believes that Vimeo will provide a better showcase for the nine videos than YouTube provides. Helen has three YouTube channels: DCG1918Gunderfriend, and RReveille.

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Growing a Farming Homeplace on Urban Land

New Video

Helen has updated the video, “Growing a Farming Homeplace on Urban Land,” that she premiered at the City of Ames eco chat about gardening held on March 2.  Although not knowing where this and similar projects will lead, she appreciates that her book is finally complete so she can invest more time in producing videos with her documentary materials and be able to share them so easily on-line.

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Growing Food and the Meaning of Land

Helen has  created a Blog-like piece for this site, containing ideas and other supplemental information related to the video, “Growing a Farming Homeplace on Urban Land, that she created and premiered at the City of Ames on-line eco chat about gardening on March 2.

See the blog piece →

Helen on the Radio

Lonna Nachtigal and Donna Prizgintas interviewed Helen on February 16, 2021, about her newly-released book, The Road I Grew Up On, on KHOI FM radio’s DonnaLonna Kitchen Show. Known also the Heart of Iowa Radio, KHOI is a non-profit organization with its studio in Ames and serves central Iowa.

Listen to the show →