Biog & CV

‘Distant Dialogues’ Sheffield
Artist statement:
My practice involves fictional narratives, a play on found visuals, language and text. This is done through manipulating images, experimental photography, installation and analogue film and writing. I am interested in correspondence, communication, connectivity and collaboration and this is extended through my international curatorial projects.
My current work is about distance stories, travel and identities. I go somewhere, get lost and collect found and hidden images embedding narratives within them. I document stories from my own and others experiences. Some are about political responses and reactions, cultural and language boundaries, human interactions; bringing different fragments of cultures into one space.

Diana Ali was born in Rusholme, Manchester to Bengali parents and is now based in Nottingham, UK. She actively works nationally and internationally taking her practice to different cities and spaces. Diana has a BA (Hons) Fine Art from Nottingham Trent University and a Masters in Contemporary Fine Art Curating/ Practice from Sheffield Hallam University. She is also a Fellowship in Higher Education (HFEA Status). She is a BAFTA nominee, has an outstanding alumni award from NTU and has CLORE leadership training.

As a Visual Artist, she has exhibited regionally, nationally at the TINAG festival, London and Site Gallery, Sheffield and solo at the Airspace Gallery, Hanley. Her international exhibitions include The Library Artspace, Victoria, Australia, The Crafts Fair in San Francisco, The Roaming Biennial in Tehran and the Other Asia’s exhibition ‘ReDo Pakistan’ in Karachi, Pakistan and has been featured in The Disarmory Newspaper in New York.

To date she has independently curated fourteen shows. National projects include ‘Up & Coming’ at the CUC in Liverpool, an event showcasing 60 emerging national and international artists, ‘Subversive Correspondence’ featuring fifty artists in London and Bristol and ‘Dialogues: A Fake Romance?’ in Swansea with thirty artists. Internationally, she has curated in countries with cultural divides; ‘A State of Un-Play’ at Atelier 35 in Romania, ‘Engagement and Entrapment’ in Israel and Palestine, Cyprus and South Korea. ‘Loss & Lucidity’ in California and Lisbon, which was her largest show featuring 60 international artists.
She is currently working with promoting and advocating the importance of creative thinking and making in different sectors outside of art. She has given presentations and workshops at the Institute of Mental Health, Nottingham University, Southwark Cathedral, KPMG, Archaeology groups (DNMGS), Haringey Council (business & Art) and schools and communities centres (well-being, domestic violence issues, race and disability). She currently teaches at Loughborough University and Open College of the Arts.


-Visual Artist
-Independent Curator
-Lecturer, Arts Educator, Workshop Leader (national/international),
-Judge: The Big Draw, Nottingham Women’s Awards, Inch Arts, Surface gallery, RBSA, Creative Change Makers (head judge).
-Creative Mentor
-Board of Trustees (Nottingham women’s Centre)
-Board of Trustees Axisweb
-Professional mentor TV work

Current Employment:

  • Visual Artist
  • Independent Curator (Click here to see projects)
  • Creative mentor
  • Fine Art Lecturer, Loughborough University
  • Art tutor for degree pathways in Fine Art (levels 4,5,6) Open College of Arts. Course author & assessor
  • Board Member: Nottingham Women’s Centre
  • Board Member Axisweb
  • Visiting Lecturer and Speaker at various educational and non-educational organisations
  • Workshop Leader for various formal and non-formal education establishments. (Click here to see workshops offered)
  • External Moderator for OCR
  • a-n The Artist Information company: artists council- bursary panel, recruitment
  • ‘Drawers Off!’- Channel 4 (Art Mentor & Consultant)
  • BBC4 – Life Drawing Live (presenter)
  • BBC 1- The Big Painting Challenge (Professional Mentor-series, 2,3,4)
  • -Advisory group (NTU), Arts Council focus group.
  • Team Leader for Art & Design department, Course Leader Foundation Diploma, Games Development lecturer.
  • Life Long Learning lecturer at Warwick University. Art and Design Lecturer at Hunghai University, China.


  • 2021 BAFTA Nominee for ‘Life Drawing Live’ (Live event category)
  • 2020 Outstanding Alumni award -Nottingham Trent University
  • 2020 CLORE Cultural Leadership Training
  • 2020 Nominee ‘Drawers Off’- Broadcast Awards
  • 2018/19 Nominee ‘life Drawing Live!’- Broadcast Awards
  • 2018 Fellow in Higher Education (HFEA Fellowship status)
  • 2010 MA Contemporary Fine Art: Curating & Practice
    Sheffield Hallam University, UK
  • 2006 Cert Ed (PG)Derby University
  • 2001 BA (Hons)Fine Art, Nottingham Trent University, UK
  • 1998 BTEC Diploma Foundation Art & Design, Manchester Metropolitan University, UK