Department of English

O'Dowd Hall, Room 544
586 Pioneer Drive
Rochester, MI 48309-4482
(location map)
(248) 370-2250
fax: (248) 370-4429

Julia Yezbick

349 O'Dowd Hall
Visiting Assistant Professor of Film Studies and Production

Julia Yezbick is a filmmaker, artist, and anthropologist based in Detroit. She received her PhD in Media Anthropology and Critical Media Practice from Harvard University and an MA in Visual Anthropology from the University of Manchester. Her audio and video works have shown at the Berlinale–Forum Expanded, MOMA PS1, the New York Library for Performing Arts, Pravo Lujdski Film Festival, Ann Arbor Film Festival, Mostra Internacional do Filme Etnográfico, Rio de Janeiro, the Montreal Ethnographic Film Festival, and the Museum of Contemporary Art, Detroit. She is a 2018 Kresge Artist Fellow for film, the founding Editor of Sensate: a journal for experiments in critical media practice, and co-directs Mothlight Microcinema in Detroit.

PhD, Harvard University, 2016, Anthropology (with Media)
MA, Harvard University, 2012, Anthropology
MA, University of Manchester, UK, 2004, Visual Anthropology
BA, Michigan State University, 2002, Interdisciplinary Humanities

Major Fields and Research Interests
Documentary film, experimental film, media anthropology, filmmaking

Courses Taught

  • CIN 1150 Introduction to Film
  • CIN 1600 Introduction to Filmmaking
  • CIN 2100 Film and Formal Analysis
  • CIN 2320 World Cinema



Yezbick, Julia. (forthcoming 2020). “Domesticating Detroit: Art Houses, Blight, and the Image of Care,” City & Society.

Tooley, Christa and Julia Yezbick, Guest Eds. (forthcoming 2020) “Appearances that matter: Aesthetic practices in the City,” special issue of City & Society.

Yezbick, Julia and Ben Gaydos. 2017 “The Artists Resonating Detroit,” Creative Many, Michigan (report).

Yezbick, Julia. 2016. “The Same Thing from Different Angles: Resituating Forest of Bliss,” in Looking with Robert Gardner, Charles Warren, Bill Rothman, and Rebecca Meyers, Eds. New York: SUNY Press, pp. 247-264.

Yezbick, Julia. 2015. “Experimental Film and Anthropology,” book review, Canadian Journal of Film Studies, Vol. 24, no. 1, pp 93-96.

Yezbick, Julia. 2013. “Detropia” (2012) film review. Visual Anthropology Review, Vol. 29, Issue 2, pp. 172–179.

Recent Work

2016 How to Rust: 25 minutes; HD single-channel video and Super 8mm. Produced in Harvard’s Film Study Center, distributed by Cinema Guild.

**World Premier: 54th Ann Arbor Film Festival (co-awarded Best Regional Filmmaker Award)

2015 Into the Hinterlands: 39 minutes; HD single-channel video. Produced in Harvard’s Film Study Center and Sensory Ethnography Lab, distributed by Arsenal Institut für Film und Videokunst e.V., Berlin (EU) and Cinema Guild (USA).

**World Premier: Berlin International Film Festival / Berlinale, Forum Expanded


Senior Editor and Executive Director of Sensate: a journal for experiments in critical media practice (since 2010)

In progress

marratein, marratein, super8mm, short film shot in Beirut and Detroit

Invited Lectures and Symposia (selection)

2019 “To make a stone stony,” invited lecture with screening of Into the Hinterlands, Marion Art Gallery, SUNY Fredonia.

2019 “Immersion: Social and Technological Pasts and Futures,” Radcliffe Institute of Advanced Study Accelerator Workshop, Harvard University

2019 “Making as Learning: creative practice as a process of inquiry,” Stamps School of Art and Design, Studio 4D, University of Michigan

2019 “Relationality in the Rust Belt: Sounding Detroit,” guest lecture/listening, Music Department, Brown University

2018 “‘How to Rust’: explorations in the relational ontologies of a postindustrial landscape,” invited lecture and film screening, University of Georgia, Athens

2018 roundtable discussant on panel: “Sensorial Formats,” Society for Cultural Anthropology, local node at University of Michigan.

2018 How to Rust screening with lecture for the Anthropology Club at Wayne State University

2018 How to Rust screening with lecture in Visual Anthropology course at University of Georgia, Athens

2018 “Relationality Through Making: Explorations in Sensory Ethnography,” lecture and video workshop, Making Sensory Ethnography, A University of Michigan Rackham Interdisciplinary Workshop

2018 How to Rust screening with lecture in Film Studies course at Michigan State University