Learn the practical skills of digital 3D modeling using the open source program Blender. Accompanying lectures and discussion will incorporate histories of spatial thinking as they relate to contemporary digital art. By the end of the course, each participant will have created at least one piece finished project using Blender.

The first class will feature a guest lecture by architecture historian Jennifer Gray. Each following session will focus on a fundamental practical area of 3D modeling. We will cover basic sculpting, making materials, lighting, rendering out for animation or print, file prepping for 3D printing. Through these lessons, participants will be able to design their own digital sculptures and output them for animation, 2D prints, 3D prints and Virtual Reality.

We will walk through each exercise together. They will be simple enough that everyone can follow along, but flexible enough that each participant can add their own creative twist. Each exercise will build a new skill and output a unique image or object.

Image: ‘Labyrinth’ by Brenna Murphy

Price: $250

Audience: Open to all.

Materials: This class uses a free open source program called Blender. Participants are encouraged to bring their own laptops, and there are a limited number of computers available at Pioneer Works for those who are unable to bring one.

Brenna Murphy weaves trans-dimensional labyrinths using personal recording devices, computer graphics programs and digital fabrication. Her work is an ongoing meditation on the psychedelic composition of embodied experience across physical and virtual realms. She also works collaboratively with Birch Cooper under the collective name MSHR, producing interactive sound installations and ceremonial performances. Her work is represented by Upfor and American Medium.

Jennifer Gray is a curator and architectural historian specializing in modern architectural history, with a particular emphasis on Chicago in a global context and how designers and activists used architecture, cities, and landscapes to advance social and spatial justice at the turn of the 20th century. Her work investigates questions of political engagement, the social sciences and cartographic practices, progressive pedagogical practices, and ecology and landscape. She is also interested in contemporary social practice in both art and architecture, as well as critical curatorial practices and critical heritage. She has been working at the Museum of Modern Art in New York City since 2004, most recently as cocurator of the exhibition Frank Lloyd Wright at 150: Unpacking the Archive, and coeditor of the accompanying publication. Her work has been published in journals of architectural history and critical heritage, and she currently is developing the manuscript Contingent Cities: Dwight Perkins, Public Space, and Critical Pragmatism in Chicago, 1893–1917. Gray received her doctor of philosophy from Columbia University.