Jean-Marc Puissant

© Mark Seliger

Jean-Marc Puissant is a stage and costume designer, curator and consultant, creating for live arts and exhibitions.

He works internationally, collaborating with leading brands, directors, choreographers and curators, commissioned by institutions, museums, opera houses and theatres in the UK, USA, Europe, Australia and Japan.

His work is presented by companies such as the Royal Opera House, Metropolitan Opera House, Biennale di Venezia, Théâtre du Châtelet, Brooklyn Museum, Sadler’s Wells, Santa Fe, Chicago Lyric and Los Angeles Opera, Sydney Opera House, Bunkamura and New National Theatre Tokyo.

Working across genres, Jean-Marc’s work is not identified by an aesthetic. It is rooted in the cultural and practical identity of art forms, in collaboration, committing to support the craft of performers and connect with a varied, multicultural, contemporary audience. Story-telling, narrative or abstract, is central to his practice.

His productions have won several Laurence Olivier Awards, South Bank Show Awards and Critics’ Circle National Dance Awards. A finalist of World Stage Design 2013, he was nominated as Best Scenographer at the 2016 Benois de la Danse for the diversity of his work across several international productions.

In August 2019, Jean-Marc curated a critically acclaimed program for New York’s Joyce Theater’s Festival.

He was awarded a 2018 Resident Fellowship at New York University’s Center for Ballet and the Arts, researching a multi-disciplinary project, Kingdom of Shades – Dance Beyond Choreographic Identity.

Jean-Marc is a judge for the 2023 Linbury Prize for Stage Design and guest tutor in scenography at London’s Central School of Speech and Drama. He trained at the Motley Theatre Design Course, London (with the kind support of the Dancers’ Career Development) and studied Art History at La Sorbonne, Paris.

He is a trustee of the Dancers’ Career Development, the UK based charity supporting dancers to successfully transition into alternative careers after retiring. He was a trustee of Dance Umbrella, London’s international contemporary dance festival, from 2008 until 2020.

Jean-Marc’s career began as a professional dancer with Stuttgart Ballet and Birmingham Royal Ballet; he danced and created roles across classical and contemporary repertoires. He graduated from the School of Paris Opera Ballet and the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris.