Cinema Studies
Department Chair:
Grace An

Administrative Assistant:
Sarah Pardee

Department Email:

Phone: (440) 775-6601
Fax: (440) 775-8684

King Building, room 141H
10 N. Professor St.
Oberlin, OH, 44074

Office Hours: Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday, 9 a.m. to 3:45 p.m.

Rian Brown-Orso

Rian Brown-Orso

Associate Professor Cinema Studies/New Media
Co-Director, Apollo Outreach Initiative
Co-Director, Apollo Center for Media Education and Production

Contact Information


Apollo Center for Media Education & Production, 19 E. College Street
Personal Office Hours:
Friday 10:00-12:00 and by appointment

Personal Web Site:

Rian Brown

Rian Brown-Orso

Educational Background

  • Bachelor of Fine Arts, Massachusetts College of Art, 1994
  • Master of Fine Arts, Univ California San Diego, 2000

Rian Brown is a filmmaker and video artist who teaches cinema studies at Oberlin College. She works in both digital/filmic and as tactile forms. Her work over the last 12 years is rooted primarily in making film/video shorts and exploring new modalities for video projection. The concepts that she tends to explore have to do with landscape, the body, memory, and notions of nostalgia. Recently her work has evolved to multichannel projection, pre-cinematic objects, and illuminated large-scale, backlit paintings.

Brown is interested rethinking the most elemental components of cinema; light, shadow and the magic of capturing and projecting moving images in time. Her work has shown around the world at film festivals and museums including the L.A. Hammer Museum of Art, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Cleveland, the New York Shorts Festival, the Ann Arbor Film Festival, Women in the Director's Chair, and many others.

Brown was an artist in residence at the Headlands Center of the Arts. She recently received the 2011 Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award. She has two young boys and spends her time in Italy and the United States.

In 2009, Brown and Oberlin Professor Geoff Pingree cofounded the Apollo Outreach Initiative (AOI). This year-round media literacy outreach program fosters local and global education, understanding, community building, and social change by providing sustainable educational outreach and media literacy opportunities for public school students of all ages in Lorain County, Ohio.

View examples of Rian Brown's work: