Skip to main content
Conferences & lectures

Writing, Making, and Transmitting Queer Canadian Art Histories

Date & time
Friday, February 23, 2024
1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Dr. Erin Silver


This event is free


Danielle Miles

Wheel chair accessible


For several decades, queer art in Canada has been hiding in plain sight, due in part to the parasitic, conspiratorial, camp, and disidentifying nature of queer Canadian art practices, and precipitated by the historical criminalization and ongoing marginalization of 2SLGBTQ+ identities. How have queer Canadian artists operated within and resisted oppressive historical climates, and how do present-day scholars and practitioners not only recuperate, but also preserve and extend the legacies of queer art and cultural production in Canada? At the outset of a 5-year SSHRC-funded research project, “Queer Operatives: Writing, Making, and Transmitting Queer Canadian Art Histories,” Silver will reflect on the social, cultural, legal, and institutional conditions within Canada that resulted in queer art history’s belated entry into the discourses that constitute the field of Canadian art; the interventions, infiltrations, and provocations of Canadian artists, scholars, curators, and activists in building queer art ecologies across Canada; and the multiple platforms—material, institutional, and ephemeral—that have permitted space and place for queer art and cultural production in Canada to take root.

Erin Silver is an Assistant Professor of Art History and Chair of the Critical and Curatorial Studies MA Program at The University of British Columbia. She is the author of Taking Place: Building Histories of Queer and Feminist Art in North America (Manchester University Press, 2023) and Suzy Lake: Life & Work (Art Canada Institute, 2021), as well as co-editor (with Amelia Jones) of Otherwise: Imagining Queer Feminist Art Histories (Manchester University Press, 2016), and (with taisha paggett) the winter 2017 issue of C Magazine, “Force,” on intersectional feminisms and movement culture. She has curated exhibitions at the FOFA Gallery (Concordia University, Montreal), the ArQuives (Toronto), and the Doris McCarthy Gallery (University of Toronto Scarborough). Silver’s writing has appeared in C Magazine, CAA Reviews, Canadian Art, Ciel Variable, Prefix Photo, Fuse Magazine, Momus, Performance Matters, Visual Resources, and in the volume Narratives Unfolding: National Art Histories in an Unfinished World (ed. Martha Langford, McGill-Queen’s University Press, 2017), as well as in various exhibition catalogues in the areas of Canadian photography and queer and feminist art. She is an editor of RACAR (Revue d’art canadienne / Canadian Art Review) and currently serves as President of the Universities Art Association of Canada / L’Association d’art des universités du Canada.

Back to top

© Concordia University