Allan Sekula was an American photographer, writer, filmmaker and critic and I remember seeing his work at the Prix Pictet Exhibition (Theme of. Sekula, A. () The body and the archive, in Bolton, R. (ed.) The contest of meaning: critical histories of photography, Cambridge: MIT Press. The main. Transcript. Allan Sekula: The Body and the Archive. ” photography is not the harbinger of modernity, for the world is already modernizing.
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It was aimed not only to make a recognisable record of criminals but also to try and determine what the criminal type might be. But this was particularly important because, as I say, more than I realized it established the documentary style as art in photography.
Alan Sekula: “The body and the archive” | photographic index
He links photography with policing early in the essay referring to the fact that Robert Peel, regarded as the father of the modern British police, was a major collector and trustee of the National Gallery founded in To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: Others, that opposed the archival paradigm were Augene Atgetwho photographed like the police daily life crime scenes but to show the squalid conditions people lived in, and Walker Evans American, —that developed work in dialogue with police uses of photography see the Subway photographs but opposed the bureaucratic structure of the photo archive with a more poetic approach see the American Photos.
Notify me of new comments via email. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: The technique of creating digital composites has also been used to visualize the ageing of those who have gone missing, particularly children. You are commenting using your WordPress. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Enter your comment here Historical in approach, there is a political flavour from the beginning.
Email required Address never made public. Pages a unit guide about learning resources Alan Sekula: In spite of his inability to identity a recognisable criminal type, Galton attempted to distance photography from its indexical relationship with the real, elevating it to the order of the symbolic, more than a trace of the individual to get to the generalised order of the abstraction.
The contest of meaning: Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: To find out more, including how to control cookies, see here: You are commenting using your Facebook account. Create a free website or blog at WordPress. For Sekula, the archival paradigm provides an instrumental realism to photography, that operates according to a specific repressive logic, of which the criminal identification photographs provide the clearest illustration, with their only purpose which is to facilitate the arrest of their referent.
Allan Sekula “The Body and the Archive” () |
In the end of the essay, Sekula pushes his argument further to place current photographers practices within this tradition, distinguishing between photographers that embrace the archival paradigm and those that oppose it.
August Sander, Secretary at Vody German Radio, Cologne, These two attitudes are identified by Sekula in documentary photographers, in their photographic relation to realism.
Sekula certainly provides plentiful evidence to support his viewpoint on the repressive use of photography and I think this is an interesting standpoint, given that he wrote this essay 30 years ago.
But the style of detachment and record is another matter. For the first time it was influential, you see. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Although that is important to any artist.
The archival paradigm is represented by the work of Alphonse Bertillon French, and Francis Galton English,two pioneers of early scientific policing that developed the concepts seku,a tools that allowed the growth of the generalised practice of the bureaucratic handling of visual documents.
Allan Sekula “The Body and the Archive” (1986)
By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use. To find out sekupa, including how to control cookies, see here: The Museum is a very influential place. Hence, the work of two leading figures in this field is considered, the Frenchman Alphonse Bertillon and the Englishman Francis Ahd.
Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your Twitter account. That applied to the world around us is what I do with the camera, what I want to see done with the camera.
Both had different approaches to the task of classifying people and trying to determine typologies. The main discussion points are: By continuing to use this website, you agree to their use.
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People of the 20th Centuryas an attempt to show universal social and professional classes its chapters include: Seeing a photograph on front of The Times newspaper that alllan used to draw attention to an article on Jewish women, I see not merely the look of the woman whom I am asked to consider as Jewish but the artificiality of the context, the idea that there is such a thing as a typical Jewish woman.
Create a free website or blog at WordPress. The use of photography by the police has been significant and impacted upon society yet this is largely unrecognised.
Notify me of new comments via email. Later photographers had utilised this approach e. The sciences of phrenology and physiognomy used sekual in an attempt to further their claims and develop their research.