Allan Sekula, Fish Story
Symposium with Eduardo Cadava, Nadja Millner-Larsen, and Benjamin Young; introduced by Sally Stein

Symposium with Eduardo Cadava, Nadja Millner-Larsen, and Benjamin Young, introduced by Sally Stein; organized on the occasion of the republication of Allan Sekula's Fish Story.

Allan Sekula (1951–2013) was a renowned photographer, filmmaker, theorist, photography historian, and critic. His magnum opus Fish Story was realized as a book and exhibition, investigating the maritime world as a site of class conflict, and the ocean as a key space of globalization.

Today, Fish Story is regarded as a seminal early critique of global capitalism, as well as a landmark body of work that challenged perceptions about the role of photography as a documentary medium. Now that it’s been nearly 25 years since the book was first published, this symposium asks four art historians, critics, and writers variously engaged with Sekula’s ideals to discuss its enduring value, principal concerns, and elaborate structure.

From 1989 to 1995, Sekula spent seven years photographing harbors and major port cities around the world. Along his multiple journeys, he charted the migration of people and circuits of capital, chronicling – with pen and camera – the experiences of diverse workforces.

Fish Story, now republished by MACK (London), spans seven montage-like chapters. Bringing together over 100 color photographs and miscellaneous texts, the book also includes an illustrated essay by Sekula, which charts western visual representations of the sea, and an essay by Benjamin Buchloh entitled “Allan Sekula: Photography Between Discourse and Document.”

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Symposium with Eduardo Cadava, Nadja Millner-Larsen, and Benjamin Young; introduced by Sally Stein
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