Research Associate, Anthropology, Theatre and Dance, University of California, Davis


Born on a small-forested island in the Salish Sea, Duskin Drum is an ecological philosopher, anthropologist, artist, and woodsman. For 20 years, Duskin has made art in Asia, Europe and the Americas including street performance, serigraphy, ecological sculpture, live art, and theatre. In 2017, he earned a doctorate from University of California, Davis in Performance Studies with designated emphases in Native American Studies, and Science and Technology Studies.

Through creative practices and ethnography of infrastructure, technology, and environmental justice, Duskin studies substantive ecological and social interactions between human and non-humans. These substantive relations, significant others like salmon, caribou, or petroleum and lithium, or even worldly foundations like geographical features or locations, are crucial companions and feedstocks. He studies how these substantive relations both compose bodies and material culture, and shape ethical norms and jurisprudence.

Duskin is currently finishing a book about petroleum pipelines, subjective temporalities, and indigenous jurisprudence. It is adapted from “Petroleum Performances,” his doctoral dissertation about petroleum art and rhetoric, and the actual operations of an oil refinery in Washington State and a crude oil pipeline terminal in Illinois.

Selected publications

Lewison, Sarah and drum, duskin. “Cornstitution and Anthermation of the Rights of Maize.” ed. Armstrong, Josh. becoming-Botanical: a post-modern liber herbalis. Objet-A Creative Studio. 2019

Drum, Duskin. “Embodied Petroleum.” Revista Corpo-Graphias: Estudios criticos de y desde los cuerpos. Vol. 5 (2018)

Drum, Duskin. “Somos petróleo.”/ “We are Petroleum.” Tabula Rasa 26 (2017): 101-122.

Drum, Duskin. “It is a Sad Penguin.” Performance Research 22, no. 2 (2017): 27-30.

O’Connor, Kevin, Duskin Drum, and Paulette Metuq. “Wear Qisi-Become Seal.” Performance Research 22, no. 2 (2017): 20-26.