Di, the artist name of Australian painter Dianne Smith, has been able to pursue her studio practice full time after retiring from teaching art for the past twenty years. Di uses painting to process past and current emotional experiences including grief and the appreciation of beauty and kindness. Her studio process involves reactive and intuitive brush strokes, rather than approaching a new work with a finished product in mind. She moves paint around with a variety of tools such as brushes, hands, palette knives, and sponges causing an array of marks and textures across canvas surfaces. She also enjoys painting outside, and gains inspiration from nature and her daily observations. Di predominantly uses oil paints, but at times mixes media and includes acrylic, pastels, watercolor, graphite, and ink.
Using abstraction and expressionist painting styles, Di affectively paints both figurative and abstract subject matter. Through her time teaching and engaging with art history, Di is interested in art’s political role. In particular, she hopes to convey themes such as connection, unification, and community.