Allan Sekula. Ship of Fools / The Dockers’ Museum

Hilde Van Gelder (Editor),

Series: Lieven Gevaert Series 19

Category: Art, Media and Visual Culture, Museum and Heritage Studies, Photography

Language: English

ISBN: 9789462700055

Publication date: February 28, 2015

€39.50 (including 6% VAT)

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Number of pages: 240

Size: 230 x 170 x mm

Stock item: 95700

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For Belgium: 5 to 8 working days

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Sekula’s final work dedicated to labor solidarity in and around the docks.
Ship of Fools / The Dockers’ Museum is the project on which the US artist and writer Allan Sekula worked during the last three years of his life (2010–2013). The work consists, first, of a corpus of thirty-three framed photographs and two slide projections of in total over one hundred images, all made by the artist (Ship of Fools); second, it contains a gigantic collection of various objects, graphic images, postcards, and prints which the artist purchased, mostly online (The Dockers’ Museum). Sekula dedicated this work to both historical and contemporary labor solidarity in and around the docks. At the time of his sad passing in the Summer of 2013, Allan Sekula was in the midst of collaborating on this publication with all four contributing authors: Gail Day, Steve Edwards, Alberto Toscano, and Hilde Van Gelder, each of whom he had asked to write essays. This volume, which includes a representative ensemble of images and objects that are part of Ship of Fools / The Dockers’ Museum, follows as closely as possible the instructions given by the artist and is the first substantial scholarly analysis of this impressive project. The volume also includes draft text materials written by the artist himself, as well as selections from the multitude of unpublished interviews, public debates, and lectures that Allan Sekula delivered between 2010 and 2012.

This publication is GPRC-labeled (Guaranteed Peer-Reviewed Content).

Contributors: Jürgen Bock (Maumaus), Gail Day (University of Leeds), Bart De Baere (Museum van Hedendaagse Kunst Antwerpen),Steve Edwards (Open University), Allan Sekula† (California Institute of the Arts), Sally Stein (University of California, Irvine), Alberto Toscano (Goldsmiths), Hilde Van Gelder (KU Leuven)

Foreword: Pas de deux
Jürgen Bock and Bart De Baere

Hilde Van Gelder

Allan Sekula’s Chronotopes:
Uneven & Combined Capitalism

Steve Edwards

Photography Against the Flow: Abstraction
and Logistics in Allan Sekula’s Writings

Alberto Toscano

Allan Sekula’s Transitive Poetics: Metonymy
and Metaphor in Lottery of the Sea, Ship of Fools
and The Dockers’ Museum

Gail Day

Allan Sekula’s Labor of Giants
Hilde Van Gelder

Collection and Recollection: Allan Sekula’s
Nutcracker Suite
Sally Stein

Selected Texts by and Excerpts from Discussions
with Allan Sekula Relating to Ship of Fools /
The Dockers’ Museum

Edited by Hilde Van Gelder


Ship of Fools / The Dockers’ Museum:
A Representative Sample


Hilde Van GelderORCID icon

Hilde Van Gelder is professor of contemporary art history at KU Leuven. She is director of the Lieven Gevaert Research Centre for Photography, Art and Visual Culture.

Readers who want to know more about Allan Sekula's works will no doubt appreciate this collection of essays
devoted to them.

Ciel Variable n°101

Hilde van Gelder, in her essay "Labor of Giants", gives the most detailed account of where the project is at the moment. Having been in contact with the artist until shortly before his death, she provides much additional material and sketches the most important thematic clusters of the collection beyond the obvious topics of dock labour and seafaring. Together with Sally Stein's amazing narrative of her coming to grips with Sekula's collection, at last almost inclined to share his firm belief that these seemingly heterogeneous objects are all connected, we thus get an excellent image of the transition of this seminal project from one state of being to another. "There is a metaphor of The Dockers' Museum," Sekula is quoted in the introductory motto, "which is 'that which is fluid, that which is moving, comes to rest. "'
Wilfried Prantner, Camera Austria 131, 2015

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