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Michael Zryd

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Cinema & Media Arts

Michael Zryd

Associate Professor



BA (Toronto), MA, PhD (NYU)


Professor Zryd's research interests include

  • Experimental cinema and media, including video art and installation
  • Experimental film & media artists (e.g., Hollis Frampton, Craig Baldwin, Luke Fowler, Su Freidrich, Philip Hoffman, Ken Jacobs, Jonas Mekas, Midi Onodera, Ruth Ozeki, Michael Snow, Stan VanDerBeek, Joyce Wieland, among others)
  • History of cinema and media studies as a discipline
  • Documentary film theory
  • American genre cinema & television, including Buffy the Vampire SlayerMarvel Cinematic Universe, DC Universe, musical, science fiction, romantic comedy
  • American populism in film and media
  • videographic criticism / video essays


Current major research projects:

  • SSHRC-funded research project,"Expanding the History of Film and Media Co-ops in Canada since 1967"
  • Co-Director (with PI Janine Marchessault) of Archive/Counter-Archive


Zryd has curated or co-curated Hollis Frampton  Magellan retrospectives in Toronto, New York, Karlsruhe and London, and has lectured in Canada, United States, Germany, Spain, UK and Argentina.

Zryd co-founded (with Prof. Robin Blaetz, Mount Holyoke College) the Experimental Film and Media Scholarly Interest Group at SCMS and, with Prof. Sharon Hayashi (York University), the Toronto Film & Media Seminar. He has served as archivist of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS) and on its Fieldnotes Committee (2017-20), and the SCMS Board of Directors 2008-11; as president of the Film Studies Association of Canada (FSAC) 2005-06; and as chair of the board of directors of the Images Festival 2004-05.

At York, Professor Zryd has taught courses on film history, theory and aesthetics; methodology; experimental film and media; American cinema; early cinema; and the musical. He was awarded the Faculty of Fine Arts Senior Faculty Teaching Award in 2011 and the Faculty of Graduate Studies Teaching Award in 2020.

[accordion closed="true" heading="Publications"]

Hollis Frampton: Navigating the Infinite Cinema (Film and Culture series, Columbia University Press, 2023) http://cup.columbia.edu/book/hollis-frampton/9780231201575

Editor of Hollis Frampton: October Files. MIT Press, 2022. http://mitpress.mit.edu/books/hollis-frampton-2

“A Short Institutional History of Canadian Experimental Film,” in Moments of Perception. Eds. Jim Shedden and Barbara Sternberg, 16-115. Fredericton, NB: Goose Lane Editions, 2021. http://gooselane.com/products/moments-of-perception

“Hollis Frampton’s ‘other work’,” review of “Hollis Frampton,” CEPA, 20 June – 5 September 2015, Buffalo, New York, NECSUS (European Review of Media Studies) (Autumn 2015), http://www.necsus-ejms.org/hollis-framptons-work/

Book Review of Andrew Uroskie, Between the Black Box and the White Cube: Expanded Cinema and Postwar Art (University of Chicago Press, 2014), Millennium Film Journal no. 62 (Fall 2015): 54-55.

Book Review of Scott Mackenzie, ed., Film Manifestos and Global Cinema Cultures (University of California Press, 2015), Canadian Journal of Film Studies 24, no. 1 (Spring 2015): 90-93.

“Dirty Movies: Teaching Experimental Film and Media Roundtable.” With Erika Balsam, Jonathan Walley, and Dustin Zemel. ACA-MEDIA: An Academic Perspective On Media, From SCMS & Cinema Journal.  Episode 14, May 2014.

“In Defence of Institutions in Experimental Film and Media,” Think:Film: International Experimental Cinema Congress, Berlin, presented 13 October 2012. Published 12 February 2014.

“Toronto as Experimental Film Capital: Screenings, Schools, and Strong Personalities.” Explosion in the Movie Machine: Essays and Documents on Toronto Artists’ Film and Video. Edited by Chris Gehman, 90-110. Toronto: Images Festival & Liaison of Independent Filmmakers of Toronto, 2013.

Magellan” [DVD essay]. In A Hollis Frampton Odyssey. New York: Criterion Collection, 2012.

“The Rise of A Film Generation’: Film Culture and Cinephilia.” In Blackwell History of American Cinema. Eds. Roy Grundmann, Cindy Lucia, and Art Simon, 362-386. Blackwell Press, 2012.

“Experimental Film as Useless Cinema.” In Useful Cinema, edited by Charles Acland and Haidee Wasson, 315-336. Durham & London: Duke University Press, 2011.

With Haidee Wasson. “Roundtable: History of Canadian Film Studies.” Ciné-Forum section. Canadian Journal of Film Studies 20, no. 1 (2011): 117-137.

“Stan VanDerBeek: From Classroom to Artist in Residence to the World.” In Stan VanDerBeek: The Culture Intercom, 108-116. Houston: Contemporary Art Museum and Cambridge: MIT List Visual Center, 2011.

“Professor Ken.” In Optic Antics: Ken Jacobs, edited by Michele Pierson, David James and Paul Arthur, 249-261. New York: Oxford University Press, 2011.

“Experimental Film and the Development of Film Study in America.” In Inventing Film Studies, edited by Lee Grieveson and Haidee Wasson, 182-216. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, 2008.

“Hollis Frampton’s Magellan.” In Buffalo Heads: Media Study, Media Practice, Media Pioneers: 1973-1990. Karlsruhe: ZKM and Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2008.

“A Movie A Day and other Film Calendars.” [DVD essay]. Midi Onodera Collected Works. 2008.

“Avant-Garde Films: Teaching Wavelength.” Cinema Journal 47, no.1, In Focus section, “Teaching Difficult Films, 2007.

“Poetry and Process: Three Films by Philip Hoffman.” [DVD essay] Spotlight Series: Philip Hoffman. Toronto: Canadian Filmmakers Distribution Centre, 2007.

“The Academy and the Avant-Garde: A Relationship of Dependence and Resistance.” Cinema Journal 45, no. 2 (2006): 17-42.

With Nicola Galombik. “The Brig: The Paradox Of Resistance and Recuperation.” CineAction no. 69 (2006): 40-49.

“History and Ambivalence in Hollis Frampton’s Magellan.” October no. 109 (Summer 2004): 119-142.

“Found Footage Film as Discursive Metahistory: Craig Baldwin’s Tribulation 99.” [revised English version of essay first published in Montage/av 11.1]. The Moving Image 3 no.2 (Fall 2003): 40-61.

“Hybrid as Allegory.” In The Films of Jack Chambers, edited by Kathryn Elder, 59-65. Cinematheque Ontario Monographs Series. Toronto: Toronto International Film Festival Group, 2002.

“A Report on Canadian Experimental Film Institutions 1980-2000.” In North of Everything: English Canadian Cinema Since 1980, edited by William Beard and Jerry White, 392-401. Edmonton: University of Alberta Press, 2002.

“Ironic Identity Frames and the Autobiographical Documentary: Ruth Ozeki Lounsbury’s Halving the Bones (1995) and My Year of Meats (1998).” Literary Research/Recherche littéraire 18 no.35 (Spring Summer 2001): 120-132.

With Brian Wall. “Vampire Dialectics: Knowledge, Institutions and Labour.” In Reading the Vampire Slayer: An Unofficial Critical Companion to Buffy and Angel, edited by Roz Kaveney, 53-77. London & New York: Taurus Parke, 2001.

"Deception and Ethics in ?O, Zoo! (The Making of a Fiction Film).” In Landscape with Shipwreck: First Person Cinema and the Films of Philip Hoffman, edited by Karyn Sandlos and Michael Hoolboom, 42-55. Toronto: Images Festival of Independent Film & Video and Insomniac Press, 2001.

“Scale.” Public nos. 19/20 (2000): 57-59 (in vol. 2 of special issue entitled “Lexicon: 20th Century A.D.).

“‘There Are Many Joyces’: The Critical Reception of the Films of Joyce Wieland.” In The Films of Joyce Wieland, edited by Kathryn Elder, 195-212. Cinematheque Ontario Monographs Series, no. 3. Toronto: Toronto International Film Festival Group, 1999.