Painting Virtual Reality

Journalism Studio Art
November 6, 2019

Studio Art alum Al DiLorenzo ‘19 learned virtual reality & painting skills — through their studio art major and a Denison Seminar — and combined them for a career in the arts.

Case in point, in November, DiLorenzo led a workshop, titled Painting Virtual Reality, at Columbus, Ohio’s Wexner Center for the Arts. The workshop was open to local teens and focused on creating virtual reality environments from paintings.

DiLorenzo also works at Appalshop, a nonprofit media, and cultural arts center in Eastern Kentucky. Appalshop amplifies the voices of regular people — coal miners to caregivers — through a variety of media productions, public presentations, and educational projects. It hosts several programs including Roadside Theater, WMMT Radio, All Access EKY, Appalachian Media Institute (AMI), and more.

Currently a media intern with All Access EKY, DiLorenzo is raising reproductive health awareness in the region through podcasts and video. DiLorenzo also is working with AMI on youth programming for the fall semester, hosting workshops in yoga and meditation, virtual reality, and art.

For the Wexner workshop, DiLorenzo used skills they acquired at translating paintings into virtual reality worlds for the presentation of their Denison BFA show. Studio Art Associate Professor Sheilah ReStack says, “The way they are using the idea of virtual reality as an access point into a world without traditional borders or boundaries is a fascinating way to look at empowerment through new technology.”

DiLorenzo also applied experiences from a Denison Seminar, co-taught by Jack Shuler and Ron Abram, titled The Stove & Glass Collective. It was during that course that DiLorenzo was introduced to Appalshop. The seminar visited the nonprofit to understand how organizations operate as collectives and engage their communities.

“The course focused on strengthening Denison’s relationship to its neighboring communities: Newark and Columbus,” says DiLorenzo. “The class also broke down traditional class structures by being more of a collaboration between students and professors”

“During our visit, I met Oakley Fugate, a local filmmaker, and artist. After graduating, I moved to Kentucky to collaborate with him on a film called Invisible Scars, which is to be released in early 2020.”

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