Figure/Ground

Fulton Fish Market


I've been in New York for close to 20 years and I had never thought about checking out the Fulton Fish Market. I guess it's hard to wrap my head around the idea that there's a bustling fish market next to a cheesy tourist trap and steps away from the financial district.

When I read that it's about to move in 2005 to Hunts Point in the Bronx, I realized that I had better haul ass down there and see it before another piece of old Lower Manhattan disappears forever.

The market reminded me of Tsujiki in Tokyo, but on a smaller scale. There's not as much exotic seafood, though I think that has more to do with market forces than with availability. What made Fulton as interesting as Tsujiki is its location. Seeing that much energy and activity in the dead of the night and in an otherwise desolate financial district is very unexpected. I love the place's Jekyll & Hyde transformation from cheesy-tourists-and-power-suits-by-day to fish-mongers-by-night.

Oh, and if it seems that there's not much people it's because Wednesday (the day we went) is the slowest day. Mondays and Thursdays are the busiest. Or so we were told. Perhaps I'll go back and check it out on a Thursday one day. Hopefully on a warmer night. The night we went was freezing. I could barely control the camera through the glove I was wearing.




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