Photographic Commissions: Visual Culture
Academic profile: The Cooper Union
Instagram: @esthermchoi


Esther M. Choi is a Canadian artist and writer in Lenapehoking, New York City, whose practice spans photography, time-based media, and publishing. Her artistic work imagines landscapes as allegories that explore the impact of modern worldmaking technologies and representations on our postnatural and globalized world. Her current focus is a body of photographic work and theoretical writing that explore the historical, material, and philosophical connections between photography and plastic.

She is the creator of Public Service (2023-), a YouTube series featuring BIPOC artists, designers, and scholars in conversations about catalyzing change in the cultural industries, and Office Hours (2020-), a participatory, global knowledge-sharing project by and for BIPOC cultural workers.

Her work has been exhibited at Texas State Galleries at Texas State University, Banvard Gallery at Ohio State University, University of Tennessee Knoxville, Leonard and Bina Ellen Gallery at Concordia University, Camera Club of New York, Usine C, Parisian Laundry, The Image Centre, Angell Gallery, Spin Gallery, and included in the Lisbon Triennial (2013) and 14th Venice Architecture Biennale (2015).

Her commissioned photography has appeared in T: The New York Times Style Magazine, Dazed and Confused, Le Monde, AnOther Magazine, AnOther Man, Elle Decor, Vice, and The New York Times Magazine. Her images for T Magazine were nominated for an ASME National Magazine Award in 2024.

Le Corbuffet (Prestel, 2019), her Fluxus-inspired artist's book about cultural consumption that took the form of a cookbook, was nominated for a James Beard Foundation Award in Photography in 2020.

She is the co-editor of Architecture at the Edge of Everything Else (MIT Press, 2010) and Architecture Is All Over (Columbia Books, 2017). Choi's writing has appeared in edited volumes such as Reaper (JRP Ringier, 2015), Radical Pedagogies (The MIT Press, 2022), and Hippie Modernism (Walker Art Center, 2015), as well as publications such as Art Papers, e-flux, Artforum, Harvard Design Magazine, and Perspecta.

She holds a joint Ph.D. in the History and Theory of Architecture and Interdisciplinary Humanities from Princeton University. Previously she earned a MDes in architectural history from Harvard University, a MFA in photography from Concordia University, and a BFA in photography from Toronto Metropolitan University. She was a 2022 Getty/ACLS Postdoctoral Fellow in the History of Art. She was Assistant Professor of Photography and Criticism and Curatorial Practice at OCAD University (2008-16) and has taught at The New School, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, University of Pennsylvania, and The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art.

She is the recipient of awards, grants, and fellowships from the Ford Foundation (2022–24), Canada Council for the Arts (2021), Asian American Arts Alliance (2022), Richard Rogers Fellowship (2019), MillerKnoll Foundation (2020–21), The Graham Foundation for Advanced Studies in the Fine Arts (2015), Canadian Centre for Architecture (2016), and the Society of Architectural Historians (2015, 2020, 2024).