Elysia French is currently a Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Postdoctoral Fellow at York University in the Faculty of Environmental Studies. French recently received her PhD from Queen’s University in the Department of Art History and Art Conservation. In her doctoral dissertation, “A Crude Case: Landscapes of Extraction in Canadian Contemporary Visual Culture,” French argues that visual narratives are important modes of inquiry and she identifies key visual tropes, such as the wilderness landscapes in Canadian visual culture, in order to counter the tendency to render oil and extractivism invisible.

French’s most recent research project examines the art and visual culture of climate change and its relations to public environmental understanding, environmental policy, and social and environmental justice. Her larger research interests focus on intersections of visual culture, including: geopolitics of climate change and the oil industry, environmental cultural studies, participatory practices, art as activism, human/animal/plant relations, environmental justice, and landscape studies.

French has held teaching positions at Queen’s University in the Department of Art History and Art Conservation, and at the University of Guelph in the School of Fine Art and Music. She also maintains an independent curatorial practice.