Dr. Dot Tuer


Co-investigator 0 OCAD University


As a writer, scholar, occasional video documentary maker, and professor at OCAD University, I am committed to giving voice to and representing perspectives of resistance to colonialism in the Americas, both past and present. 

My recent research projects have included an archival history of Guaraní-Spanish relations and transculturation in the Río de la Plata (Argentina, Bolivia, Paraguay) during the 1500s that is now being revised for publication and a major exhibition on Mexican revolutionary artists Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera at the Art Gallery of Ontario, (Frida and Diego: Passion, Politics, and Painting, 2012-13), as well as ongoing writing on Canadian and Latin American contemporary art. A selection of my published writings are posted at http://ocad.academia.edu/DotTuer 

My current research projects concern three interrelated sites of resistance to colonialism in the Americas: mestizaje (cultural mixing and exchange) in the Americas as an historical and ongoing process of contestation and affinity between indigenous peoples and Europeans; the politics of cultural memory and visual storytelling; and the use of photography, performance, and new media to enable witnessing and political agency. 

I am engaged in writing a book on Canadian art that brings into dialogue artists who address the colonial legacies of displacement and identity from a First Nations’ perspective with artists who address how displacement and identity are shaped by diasporic experiences of immigration and exile. I am specifically concerned with tracing how artistic practices seek to contest and commemorate historical memory through storytelling and performativity in order to evoke traces of a process of transculturation. 

Another of my projects is an investigation of how photography serves as an archival trace of witnessing and its relationship to oral testimony. I am writing creative-documentary monograph on photography and Spaces of Memory in Buenos Aires and Rosario, Argentina, which were formerly clandestine detention and extermination centres during Argentina’s military dictatorship from 1976 to 1983. In this book, I reflect on how photographs serve as witness to and testimony of the recent history of political struggle and human rights abuses in Argentina. 

My third ongoing research commitment at present involves my participation in and support for the struggles of Guaraní communities in the Iberá wetlands of Corrientes (a province in north-east Argentina) for water rights, land rights, and cultural self-determination, and their resistance to multinational corporate interests in the region. This research encompasses oral testimony, archival investigation, and video documentation.