Nonny de la Peña (VR Director)
Nonny de la Peña is one of the most influential pioneers in virtual and augmented reality. She is the founder and CEO of the award-winning Emblematic Group, renowned for using cutting edge technologies to tell immersive stories that create intense, empathic engagement on the part of viewers. She was named the WSJ’s Technology Innovator of the Year, one of CNET’s 20 Most Influential Latinos In Tech, Wired Magazine’s #MakeTechHuman Agent of Change and has been called the “Godmother of VR” by Forbes, Engadget and the Guardian. Widely credited with pioneering the field of immersive journalism by premiering the first ever VR experience at the Sundance Film Festival in 2012, Hunger in Los Angeles, she is now on the verge of announcing another breakthrough: Emblematic Group’s new REACH.Love web platform, which is a no code solution for making AR/VR/XR content.
With Nonny at the helm, Emblematic continues to be the leader in using cutting edge technologies to create impactful content and her visionary leadership has resulted in profitable partnerships with blue chip companies around the globe. She launched the first-ever digital fashion show with Italian streetwear brand GCDS, employing revolutionary virtual production techniques to recreate models and clothing in a fantasy world. Nonny has earned numerous awards and accolades along the way, including the Knight Innovation Award, New America Fellow and Yale Poynter Media Fellow.
Nonny is also a member of the BAFTA VR Advisory Board and a TED speaker. Showcases around the globe include the Venice Film Festival, World Economic Forum, the Victoria and Albert Museum and Moscow Museum of Modern Art. Nonny’s work has also been featured by The New York Times, BBC, Elle Magazine, The Hollywood Reporter, Vice, Buzzfeed and USA Today. Prior to Emblematic, Nonny spent more than 20 years in media as a writer, director and producer, including stints as a correspondent for Newsweek and a drama writer for CBS.
Nonny earned her PhD from the University of Southern California, in Media Arts and Practice, an MA focusing on Online Communities also at USC, and a BA from Harvard, in Sociology and Visual & Environmental Studies.
— WWDCreating this fashion show was truly out of this world. We had to marry multiple virtual production techniques to bring the catwalk characters to life. Using Epic’s Unreal Engine, top cinematography talent in Hollywood, the amazing software Marvelous Designer plus the incredible team at Emblematic, we were able to realize a fantasy place of changing light and environmental elements to support GCDS’ incredible designs.
— The VergeVirtual reality pioneer Nonny de la Peña charts the future of VR journalism
— Digital TrendsUsing virtual reality, de la Peña has brought viewers up close to and inside of the stories of a variety of people.