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Blog and News

Introducing our new Artist in Residence, Diana de Vere Cole

21st October 2019

We are delighted to announce that the artist Diana de Vere Cole has been appointed as our Artist in Residence for 2019 – 2020.

Diana is primarily a figurative artist, and her oil paintings have been displayed in galleries around the UK and in open exhibitions such as the Royal Academy and the Royal West of England Academy.

Born near Guildford in Surrey, her artistic talents were recognised and encouraged by her artist parents from an early age. So she was already immersed in an artistic lifestyle when, after the death of their friend Sir Frank Brangwyn RA – and at his behest – her parents bought his former home and studios in Ditchling, a village that is sited at the foot of Ditchling Beacon on the South Downs and already had important artistic connections.

Studying at Brighton College in her late teens, Diana followed courses in fine art, drawing, etching, calligraphy and brush lettering. She then moved to Paris to spend a year painting at L’Ecole des Beaux Arts, with accompanying life classes at L’ Academie Julian.

Marrying the youngest son of Augustus John on her return and living in Salisbury, Diana initially specialised in portrait painting and book illustration. Over the years she widened her remit by such varied pursuits as designing and painting stage sets, presenting art exhibitions and decorating modern harpsichords. But she has become particularly known for her private and public murals, three of which adorn the long corridors of Salisbury Hospital.

Having recently returned to Sussex and found herself with a home in Parham Park, Diana is, in actuality, an artist in residence at Parham and the South Downs are, once again, providing spectacular backgrounds for many of her works, most of which depict the beauty of Parham House and Gardens and its surrounding countryside.

Diana’s series of paintings will be exhibited here at Parham next year.