Media @ McGill

Ross, Christine


Full Professor, James McGill Chair in Contemporary Art History

Interest and Bio: 

Christine Ross is Professor and James McGill Chair in Contemporary Art History in the Department of Art History and Communication Studies at McGill University. Her main field of research is contemporary media arts, in particular: the relationship between media, aesthetics and subjectivity; visuality; mutations of spectatorship in contemporary (participatory) art; augmented reality; and reconfigurations of time and temporality in recent media arts. Her books include: The Past is the Present; It’s the Future too: The Temporal Turn in Contemporary Art (Continuum: 2012); The Aesthetics of Disengagement: Contemporary Art and Depression (University of Minnesota Press: 2006); and Images de surface: l’art vidéo reconsidéré (Artextes: 1996). She has co-edited (with Olivier Asselin and Johanne Lamoureux) Precarious Visualities: New Perspectives on Identification in Contemporary Art and Visual Culture (McGill-Queen’s University Press: 2008). Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada (2010-present) and first laureate of the Artexte Award for Research in Contemporary Art (2012), she is the co-founder of the Department of Art History and Communication Studies at McGill University and was recently named the recipient of the David Thomson Award for Graduate Supervision and Teaching (2011). She is currently the Principal Investigator of two FQRSC research teams on the “Exploration of Augmented Reality in Contemporary Art and Visual Culture,” and “Hybrid Spaces in New Media” (2005-2013). She is now working on a series of articles and a book manuscript on perception in movement in contemporary spatial art practices.


Esthétique, nouveaux médias et la (re)configuration de l’espace public, Perception as Something We Do: The Reconsideration of Spectatorship in Contemporary Art


Recent and forthcoming publications include:

The Participatory Condition, coedited by D. Barney, G. Coleman, C. Ross, J.Sterne, and T. Tembeck (University of Minnesota Press) [in progress and forthcoming 2015] ;

“Depression,” Encyclopedia of Aesthetics (Oxford University Press). (forthcoming 2014];

“Movement that Matters Historically: Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller’s 2012 Alter Bahnhof Video Walk,” in Moving (with) Images: Gender, Affect, and the Senses, Martha Zarzycka and Bettina Papenburg, eds., Discourse: Journal for Theoretical Studies in Media and Culture (special journal issue). [forthcoming 2014];

“The Oscillation of the Visible/L’oscillation du visible: Olivia Boudreau,” in Olivia Boudreau (Leonard & Bina Ellen Art Gallery, Concordia University) [forthcoming Spring 2014]

“Historical Time Ecologized/Le temps historique écologisé,” Esse (81) [forthcoming Spring 2014];

“Après la vidéo,” Revue 24 Images (165), December 2013/January 2014, 18-21;

“L’historicisation affective des espaces publics: l’Alter Bahnhof Video Walk de Janet Cardiff et George Bures Miller/The Affective Historicization of Public Spaces: Janet Cardiff and George Bures Miller’s l’Alter Bahnhof Video Walk,” Ciel Variable (95), Fall 2013;

- “La réalité augmentée en art: une question de (non)destination,” in Le Réel à l’épreuve des technologies: les arts de la scène et les arts médiatiques, Josette Féral and Edwige Perrot, eds. (Presses Universitaires de Rennes: 2013);

“Historical Narrative in the Work of Stan Douglas,” in L’Art de la syntaxe, ed. J. Game, (Éditions de Vincennes: 2011);

“New Screens Beyond the Screen: The Spatial Distribution of the Image in Augmented Reality Art,” in Screen/Space: The Projected Image in Contemporary Art, ed. T. Trodd (Manchester University Press: 2011);

“Spatial Poetics: The (Non)Destinations of Augmented Reality Art, Part I”  and “Spatial Poetics: The (Non)Destinations of Augmented Reality Art, Part II,” Afterimage, 2010;

“Video Art in Canada,” in Canadian Art: The Twentieth Century, ed. B. Foss, S. Pakowsky and A. Whitelaw (Oxford University Press: 2010);

“The Suspension of History in Contemporary Media Arts,” Intermédialités, 2009;

“New Media's Presentness and the Questioning of History: Craigie Horsfield's Broadway Installation,” Cinémas, 2007;

“The Temporalities of vVdeo: Extendedness Revisited” Art Journal, 2006;

“New media art hybridity and augmented reality: a process for the interaction of art, (neuro)science and AR technology,” Convergence, 2005;

“The Paradoxical Bodies of Contemporary Art,” in Amelia Jones, ed., A Companion to Contemporary Art (Blackwell: 2006);

“The Disappearing Screen: An Incomplete Matter,” Parachute, 2004;

“Redefinitions of abjection in contemporary performances of the female body,” in F. Connelly, ed. Modern Art and the Grotesque (Cambridge University Press: 2003);

“To Touch the Other: A Story of Corpo-Electronic Surfaces,” in Amelia Jones, ed., The Feminism and Visual Cultural Reader (Routledge: 2003);

“Pipilotti Rist: Images as Quasi Objects,” n. paradoxa 7, 2001;

“The Insufficiency of the Performative: Video art at the turn of the millennium,” Art Journal, 2001;

“Vision and insufficiency at the Turn of the Millennium: Rosemarie Trockel's Distracted Eye,” October, 2001.

Faculty page: 

Visit Professor Ross's faculty page here.


During the 2013-2014 academic year, Professor Ross taught a graduate seminar and an undergraduate Honour's seminar on “New Materialist Approaches to Spectatorship in Contemporary Art.” The seminars examined the new materialist shift in contemporary art by addressing the redefinitions it sets about—redefinitions of notions and practices of agency, spectatorship, mediation, and criticality. To account for these redefinitions, the seminars investigated the human-nonhuman relationships set into play in the work of different artists, including: Janet Cardiff & George Bures Miller, Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Pierre Huygue, Sarah Sze, Olafur Eliasson, Thomas Hirschhorn, Mark Lewis, Olivia Boudreau, David Altmejd, Ann Hamilton, Zeger Reyers, Jimmie Durham, Superflex, Natalie Jeremijenko, Francis Alÿs, and Fischli & Weiss. She will be on sabbatical in 2014-2015.


Contemporary media arts; Augmented Reality; perception; spectatorship; and new forms of temporality in contemporary art.