Press Release

On August 24, 2023, the Walker Art Center will open Allan Sekula: Fish Story, Sekula’s groundbreaking nine-chapter image-based research project exploring the profound impact of the globalized shipping trade and its relationship to romantic notions of the sea. Regarded as one of the most influential photographers and thinkers of his generation, Allan Sekula (1951–2013) is known for blending documentary-style photography with essays to create poignant narratives that speak to and critique global social, economic, and political structures.



International exhibitions

International Archives 2nd half of 2023

Allan Sekula, Fish Story

Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (United States)

24.08.2023 - 21.01.2024




Conceived as both an exhibition and a book, Fish Story is considered one of the most important conceptual photography projects of the 20th century and features 105 photographs, slide projections, and accompanying texts developed over the course of many years. The Walker’ presentation of Fish Story marks the first time that the work will be presented in the United States in its entirety since its institutional debut tour in 1999. An evocative reflection on capitalism, labor, international politics, climate change, and our connections to water, Fish Story remains as relevant today as when Sekula first created it. The presentation will remain on view at the Walker through January 21, 2024.

To create Fish Story, Sekula traveled the world, documenting harbors and port cities. Beginning in 1989 at the Port of San Pedro in his native Los Angeles, by 1995, Sekula traveled as far as South Korea, Scotland, and Poland, photographing the workers and communities as well as the built and natural environments that support global shipping. He spent weeks, at times months, in these coastal towns and cities, living and working alongside tradespeople, whose stories and experiences were little discussed and often invisible. Each of the nine chapters in Fish Story relates to a different aspect of maritime commerce and emphasizes the dynamics of class and labor within the profit-focused structures of globalized trade. At the same time, the project explores the mystery and aura of the sea, merging documentary style research with the aesthetics of fine art.

“Allan Sekula’ seminal work remains as vital as ever in its encapsulation of the effects of globalized trade and shipping on individuals, communities, and the natural world, which have only become heightened in recent years. His work feels incredibly prescient and poetic within our contemporary contexts,”said William Hernández Luege, Curatorial Assistant of Visual Arts at the Walker. “he Walker acquired Fish Story in 2013 as part of our mission to support and amplify groundbreaking artistic approaches and what they can mean to our communities. We are looking forward to sharing this incredible work with our audiences and to fostering new conversations about Sekula’ work and the many topical themes and ideas with which it engages.”

The presentation of Fish Story will also include a reading room featuring a selection of Sekula’ published works and inviting lounge seating, to encourage further connection with his work and understanding of his practice. The exhibition will also be accompanied by a robust series of programs and lectures.

Curatorial team : William Hernádez Luege, curatorial assistant, Visual Arts

Exhibition 24 August 2023- 21 January 2024. Walker Art Center, 725 Vineland Place - Minneapolis, MN 55403 (United States). T +1 612 375 7600. Hours: Wednesday–Sunday 10am–pm, Thursday 10am–pm.






Experimental Ecology, Kulturstiftung Basel, Switzerland

© ArtCatalyse International / Marika Prévosto 2023. All Rights Reserved

Allan Sekula, Chapter Six: “rue Cross” from Fish Story (#87), 1988–995. Walker Art Center, T. B. Walker Acquisition Fund, 2012.

Allan Sekula, Chapter Six: “rue Cross” from Fish Story (#87), 1988–995. Walker Art Center, T. B. Walker Acquisition Fund, 2012.