Friday 9 February 2024

Video Shop Horrors Exhibition

"Video Shop Horrors" was a multimedia exhibition held at Northumbria University's Gallery North, 26th October to 11th November 2023.

"Video Shop Horrors" captured the nascent video shop experience. In the 1980s, horror videos always seemed to be more effectively promoted than those of other genres. The artwork tended to be bombastic, awash with contorted faces, flashing blades, ghouls and gore. 

The so-called ‘video nasties’ moral panic came and went, but its legacy, the types of film it encompassed, and the promotional strategies of the first video distribution companies, live on. This exhibition captured the dynamism of this hugely significant technological moment, pooling from original archival materials, to showcase the promotional strategies employed by video companies to attract consumers and, in some cases, to whip up controversy. The significance of video to the development and enduring popularity of horror films cannot be understated. 

"Video Shop Horrors" recreated the 1980s/90s video shop experience whilst celebrating the aesthetic and the wealth of films that helped define and redefine the horror film genre.

The "Video Shop Horrors" exhibition was led by Dr Johnny Walker drawing on his extensive archive of video-related paraphernalia. The exhibition featured video and music by Dr Steve Jones. The exhibition represents the interests of staff working within the University’s new Horror Studies Research Group.

Below are some videos documenting the exhibition:

An interview with me and Johnny about the exhibition:

The soundtrack I composed for the exhibition:

Horror Studies Research Group at Northumbria

Northumbria has a long-standing international reputation as the home of horror scholarship. I am now leading our newly formalised Horror Studies Research Group.

We've been busy since we launched in October 2023. Aside from running our reading group, I set up our website, Twitter/X feed, and YouTube channel. The YouTube channel features playlists of various talks, podcasts and events our members have been involved in.

We organised a multimedia exhibition - "Video Shop Horrors" - at Northumbria University's Gallery North, 26th October to 11th November 2023. Read more about that here.

We hosted a workshop for the AHRC funded Youth and Horror Network, organised by Kate Egan (Northumbria Univeristy) and Cat Lester (Birmingham University) on 7th November. 

We also won funding to host our annual Horror Studies Now conference: more details and the Call for Papers is available here.

There are lots of developments to follow, but if you want to get in touch, contact us at

The Metamodern Slasher Film - New Book Out Now!

My new book, The Metamodern Slasher Film is finally out! 

To find out more, click here: Metamodern Slasher Film | Dr Steve Jones

If you order through Edinburgh University Press, use the code NEW30 to get 30% off

Here is a video presentation about the book's content: