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Gillian Rose

Visualising the smart city
Digital technologies of various kinds are now the means through which many cities are made visible and their spatialities negotiated. From casual snaps shared on Instagram to elaborate photo-realistic visualisations, digital technologies for making, distributing and viewing cities are more and more pervasive. This talk will explore some of the implications of that digital mediation for the cultural politics of urban representation. What and who is being made visible in these digitally mediated cities, and how? What forms of urban materiality, spatiality and sociality are pictured and performed? And how should that picturing be theorised? The talk will suggest that cities and their inhabitants are increasingly visualised through a vertiginous fluid ‘digital visuality’, which is in fact evident across a number of visual practices. It will also propose that critical accounts of such visuality should focus less on readings of images and more on considering the (geographically-specific) flows and frictions of images.

About Gillian Rose
Gillian Rose is Professor of Cultural Geography at The Open University, UK and a Fellow of the British Academy.  Her current research interests focus on contemporary digital visual culture and on so-called ‘smart cities’.  She is the author of Doing Family Photography: The Domestic, The Public and The Politics of Sentiment (Ashgate, 2010) and Visual Methodologies (Sage, fourth edition 2016), as well as a number of papers on images and ways of seeing in urban and domestic spaces. Gillian blogs at visual/method/culture, and a full list of her publications can be found at



  • Christian Licoppe
  • Scott McQuire
  • Gillian Rose
  • Sara Broos
  • Jacek Smolicki
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  • Julie Firmstone
  • Matthew Weber
  • Lars Nyre
  • Nikki Usher
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