Seeds of Change: A Portrait of the Hmong American Farmers Association
Photographs by Mike Hazard
January 27 – May 26, 2017
Minnesota State Capitol (Exhibition rooms 320 and 321)
75 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd, St. Paul, Minnesota 55155
The Hmong American Farmers Association (HAFA) has served, supported, and advocated for Hmong farmers and their families since 2011. HAFA was founded with the mission of advancing the community’s prosperity: They strive to eliminate many of the obstacles farmers face and help to establish long-term solutions for growth and sustainability.
The photographs and books on view in Seeds of Change: A Portrait of the Hmong American Farmers Association were created by multimedia artist Mike Hazard. These images comprise a year in the lives of Hmong American farmers working on the HAFA farm in Vermillion Township, Minnesota. The images cross generations and cultures, capturing the vibrant community and rich history of the farm, showcasing the fruits of community efforts to cultivate success among first-, second-, and third-generation Hmong Americans. As it has grown, HAFA has implemented multiple programs designed to enable their affiliated farmers to be successful, which include building access to long-term land tenure and land ownership, establishing dependable markets, and offering professional training to hone both farming and business techniques.
Seeds of Change celebrates the rich culture of Minnesota’s Hmong farmers, while highlighting the beauty of Minnesota’s landscape and our state’s agricultural traditions. This exhibition also fosters dialogues on family, community, immigration, and local commerce, touching on broader topics of ethnicity, land ownership, and sustainability. You may also watch a related video, We Go to the Garden, to experience more of the sights and sounds of the farm through the seasons.
Seeds of Change is organized by the Minnesota Museum of American Art.
The exhibit is on view during open hours of the Capitol building: Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Saturday, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.; Sunday, 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.