Dot Tuer Image
Dot Tuer Image
Dot Tuer
Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences, Graduate Studies

Area(s) of Expertise

Latin American and Canadian Art, Postcolonial theory, Photography and New Media History, Performance studies


Dot Tuer is a writer, curator, and Professor of Critical and Visual Studies in the Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences. Her scholarly and creative work explores the intersection of cultural memory and visual storytelling in Latin American and Canadian art, with a specific interest in photography, performance, and new media. She is the author of Mining the Media Archive (2005), and of more than one hundred museum catalogue, book anthology, and journal essays. In 2012-13, she was guest curator of the retrospective exhibition of Mexican artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera, Frida and Diego: Passion, Politics, and Painting held at the Art Gallery of Ontario. A selection of her writings is posted at

Over the last several decades, Tuer has served as a board member for the Power Plant; Toronto Arts Council; Cinemateque Ontario; Funnel Film Theatre; and Fuse and C magazines. She has also served as a juror for all levels of government cultural funding, as well as for international festivals and museums. At present, she sits on the editorial boards of Public and Gestos (HemiPress)and on the advisory boards of Prefix Photo and LACAP (Latin American-Canadian Art Projects). 

At OCAD University, she has served in an administrative capacity as Acting Graduate Director of Criticism and Curatorial Practice MFA (2017-18); Acting Dean of Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the School of Interdisciplinary Studies (2015); founding Chair of Visual and Critical Studies undergraduate art history Honours BA program (2013-15); Undergraduate Chair of Criticism and Curatorial Practice BFA (2007-9); Founding Graduate Director of Criticism and Curatorial Practice MFA (2008-9); and Acting Associate Dean of Liberal Studies (2003).

In recognition of her contribution to the contemporary art field, Tuer has received a number of awards, including the OAAG Curatorial Writing Award, Toronto Arts Award, National Magazine Award, Canada Council Visual Arts grants, Ontario Arts Council Arts Writing and Literature grants, and OCADU’s Award for Distinguished Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activity. Currently, she is a co-investigator on a SSHRC-funded partnership grant, the Canadian Consortium of Performance and Politics in the Americas (2013-2020).

Tuer teaches courses at the undergraduate level on Latin American art, the history of photography and new media, contemporary art and theory, and thesis research and writing. At the graduate level, she teaches courses on postcolonial and contemporary art theory and has supervised students across a range of MA and MFA programs. 



-Ph.D., University of Toronto (2011)

-Master of Arts, University of Toronto (1996)

-Bachelor of Arts with Honours, Queen's University (1981)

Professional Experience


Guest Curator, Frida and Diego: Passion, Politics and Painting, Art Gallery of Ontario, October 2012-January 2013

Selector, Art Gallery of Ontario Grange Photography Prize, 2008-9.

Curator, Spotlight Retrospective on Vera Frenkel, Images Film Festival, 1997.

Curator. A Maze of Complicity, YYZ Gallery, 1996

Residency Leader for End of the Nation-State Artists Residency. Banff Centre for the Arts, 1994.

Programmer, Framing Bodies, Framing Technologies. Peterborough International Images Film Festival, 1992.

Programmer, Canadian Film Retrospective, Toronto Festival of Festivals, 1992.

Programmer, High Tech/Low Tech: Bodies in Space, Pleasure Dome, 1992.

Curator, Technology and Autobiography in Video, Video In, 1992.

Curator, Imaging Labour, Ministry of Culture and Communication, 1991.

Curator, Cache du Cinema, Funnel Film Theatre, 1985.

Curator, The Coming of Age, Canada House, London, England, 1985.

Awards \ Grants

SSHRC Partnership Grant (Co-investigator), Canadian Consortium of Performance and Politics in the Americas (2013-2020)

SSHRC Insight Research-Creation Grant (Co-investigator), QUIPUCAMAYOC: transmedial, translocal game creation with two Andean communities (2013-16)

SSHRC Partnership Development Grant (Collaborator), Photography and the Transnational Politics of Affect (2011-2014)

SSHRC International Development Fund (Co-investigator), Affect and Photojournalism (2008)

Canada Council Senior Grant to Independent Curators and Critics: 2007. 

Ontario Art Galleries Association Curatorial Writing Award:  2004, 1993.

Canada Council B Grant for Critics and Curators: 1994, 1993, 1991, 1988, 1987, 1986, 1985.

Ontario Arts Council Literature Grant: Works in Progress 1999.

Canada Council A Grant: 1999.

Ontario Arts Council Grants to Art Writers: 1995, 1994, 1992, 1991, 1990, 1989, 1988, 1987, 1985.

Toronto Arts Council Writers Award 1989.

Canada Council Explorations Grant 1989.


Selected Publications


Frida and Diego: Passion, Politics and Painting, eds. Dot Tuer and Elliot King. Toronto: Art Gallery of Ontario, 2012.

Mining the Media Archive: Essays on Art, Technology, and Cultural Resistance. Toronto: YYZ Books, 2005

Selected Essays (2008-2018)

Ghostly Traces and Memories of Passage: The Journey to the Atacama Desert and the Ritual of Return. Return to Atacama. Forthcoming (Gestos Hemipress).

Traces and Erasures: Documenting the Rosario Space of Memory (with Alberto Gomez) Prefix Photo 36 (2017).

Common Ground: The Thematics of Dispossession in Contemporary Arab and Canadian Art.” Asian Diasporic Visual Cultures and the Americas. Vol. 2, No. 3 (Fall 2016)

Meeting Places: The Decolonial Aesthetics of Ron Benner’s Three Questions,” in Ron Benner: Three Questions. London, Ontario: McIntosh Gallery, 2016. 

Homespun Cinemas & Local Community: The Documentary Photography of John Porter, In John Porter's CineScenes: Documentary Portraits from Alternative Film Scenes, Toronto and Beyond, 1978-2015. Toronto: 8fest Publications, 2015.

A Greeting from the Anishanabe of Canada to the Tzotzil in Chiapas: Decolonizing the Gesture of Friendship between Indigenous Nations. E-hemispheric: Decolonization 11:1 (Winter 2014)

Beyond the New Media Frame: The Poetics of Absence in Vera Frenkel's String Games."In Vera Frenkel, ed. Sigrid Schade. Berlin: Verlag, 2013.

Towards the Darkness (and the Light): Reflections on an ESMA Photograph. Prefix Photo 27 (2013).

Counterpoints Towards a Politics of Provocation: Revolutionary Ideology and Conceptual Art in Tucuman Arde and It's Still Privileged Art. Transmissions Annual Journal (2011).

Looking for Castro. Prefix Photo 23 (2011).

A Certain Regard: The Spectre of the Self (as other). In Suzy Lake: Political Poetics. University Centre Art Gallery, University of Toronto, 2011.

Colonial Legacy of Popular Belief in North-East Argentina. In Transcultural Americas / Ameriques transculturelles. Ed. Afef Benessaieh. Ottawa: University of Ottawa Press, 2010.

From the Far Edge of Home. In Jamelie Hassan: At the Far Edge of Words. London & Vancouver: Museum London and the Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery, 2009.

Politics of Recognition. In Conde and Beveridge: Class Works. Ed. Bruce Barber. Halifax: NASCAD Press, 2008.


Professional Affiliations / Boards / Juries

Current Board Positions and Research Affiliations

CERLAC Associate Fellow, York University (2017-)

Editorial Board, Gestures/Gestos Hemipress, NYC; Editorial Board, Public (2016-)

Advisory Board, Latin American-Canadian Art Projects, LACAP (2014-)

Board Member, Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics (2012-)

Contributing Editor, Art Canada Institute (2012-)

Toronto Photography Seminar, (2006-)

Editorial Board, Public (2002-)

Advisory Board, Prefix Photo (2000-)

Past Board Positions and Research Affiliations 

Massey College Senior Fellow (2015-16)

Contributing Editor: Fuse Magazine, (2004-9)

Visual Arts Committee: Toronto Arts Council (2000-3)

Advisory Board, Cinemateque Ontario (1991-1997)

Chair, Board of Directors: Fuse Magazine (1994-1996)

Board of Directors, The Power Plant, Harbourfront (1991-95)

Advisory Board, C Magazine (1991-1993)

Advisory Board to the Minister of Culture, Ontario (1991)

Board of Directors. Funnel Film Theatre (1984-86) Chair (1985-86).

Professional Organizations

Writer’s Union of Canada

University Art Association of Canada