John Cussans

Staff details

PositionAssociate Researcher
Department Visual Cultures
Email j.cussans (
John Cussans

John Cussans is an artist, writer and researcher with an academic background in graphic design, illustration and art theory. His practice, which is often collaborative, crosses video, text, image-making, cultural history and alternative pedagogy. He began making and exhibiting work while completing his doctoral thesis on Georges Bataille and the Video Nasty controversy at the Royal College of Art in the mid 90’s, having his first solo exhibition at the Cabinet gallery (London) in 1994.  In 2001 he co-founded The Bughouse, an international artistic collaboration inspired by the works of the science fiction writer Philip K. Dick, and in 2008 he co-founded The Free School in a New Dark Age, a no-cost, arts education initiative that became active in the student protest movement between 2010 and 2012. He has exhibited at a number of galleries internationally, and his writing has been published in several collections and journals, including Frozen Tears, Strange Attractor and Transmission Annual

Since 2009 he has been involved with the Ghetto Biennale in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, often working with the Haitian video collective Tele Geto. He has recently completed a book about representations of Haiti and Vodou in popular culture: Undead Uprising: Haiti, Horror and the Zombie Complex. He is currently working on an long-term artistic research project - The Skull Cracker Suite - which is designed to test Viveiros de Castros’ notion of a “permanent decolonization of thought” in the context of the contemporary art scene in British Columbia. He is a founding member of DRUGG (Diagram Research Use and Generation Group) and is currently MFA Course Leader and Departmental Lecturer at the Ruskin School of Art (Oxford).