Wednesday, February 15, 2012
"The Ascending Journey" at UK Vis Center
The Ascending Journey Trailer from Vis Center on Vimeo.
Last Thursday I was invited to see the premier of "The Ascending Journey" at UK's Center for Visualization and Virtual Environments by Dr. Brent Seales, UK professor and director of the Vis Center. I first met Brent by playing music together where we attend church in Lexington. Once Brent found out I was a photographer and worked with digital imaging, he began to explain numerous projects they were working on at the Vis Center. One story from the beginning that I remember is Brent explaining how they had developed technology to read text off the inside of ancient scrolls while they were still rolled up. I later began to realize the depth and breadth of his work when I saw "Imaging the Illiad: A Digital Renaissance" on KET in which a team from the Vis Center traveled to the Marciana Library in Vinace, Italy to fully digitize the Venetus A, a Byzantium book over 1000 years old.
"The Ascending Journey" is a documentary following Nancy Clouter's battle against multiple myeloma, a rare form of blood cancer. Digital imaging is not a primary part of this film, but rather another aspect of what the Vis Center seems to do well, and that's collaborating across disciples. In this case the Vis Center worked with the UK Markey Cancer Center, the UK Music Department, and the Lexington Philharmonic to tell Nancy's story. (To fill in a little information, Nancy is the principal oboe player for the Philharmonic and a professor in the music department at UK.) Due to her illness, Nancy is unable for a time to play music, but ultimately the story is very encouraging and uplifting as she battles through the disease. I'm quite glad I had the opportunity to see it – and perhaps you may as well in the near future as the documentary is released to the public.