Bio/CV

BIOGRAPHY

Diane Burko’s art focuses on monumental geological phenomena. To that end, she has investigated locations on the ground and in the air from open-door helicopters and planes with cameras and sketchpads. Traveling from the temperate zones of America to Western Europe, from rain forests to glaciers and active volcanoes below the equator, her art merges a vision that is at once panoramic, intimate and sometimes provocative.

Born in Brooklyn, in 1945, Burko graduated Skidmore College in 1966 with a B.S. in art history and painting. In 1969, she earned an MFA in painting from the University of Pennsylvania. Burko was a professor at Community College of Philadelphia from 1969-2000, also teaching at Princeton University, ASU, and PAFA. In 1974, she founded FOCUS: Philadelphia Focuses on Women in the Visual Arts. In 1976, Ivan Karp offered her a “Dealer’s Showcase” which caught the attention of David Bourdon, who wrote about her in The Village Voice leading to gallery exhibits in New York in the 80’s. From 1976 to 2012 she was represented by the Locks Gallery in Philadelphia. She is now represented by LewAllen in Santa Fe NM and Cindy Lisica in Houston. A 1977, flight with James Turrell over the Grand Canyon, inspired Burko’s first aerial photographs of the landscape - establishing her lifelong process of securing visual material. In 1989, the Lila Wallace Foundation awarded Burko a six-month residency in Giverny, France. In 1993, she had a residency at the Rockefeller Study and Conference Center in Bellagio. Robert Rosenblum, who first took an interest in Burko’s work in 1976, wrote the accompanying catalog essay for her 1994 exhibition, Luci ed Ombra di Bellagio. In 1996, Burko won a $200,000 Public Art Commission for three monumental canvases installed in the Marriott Hotel in Philadelphia. In 2000, a $50,000 Leeway prize funded a project on Volcanoes, enabling her to travel to Hawaii, Italy and Iceland. Carter Ratcliff contributed an essay for the 2001 Volcano Catalog. In 2011, she was awarded the Lifetime Achievement Award by the WCA. In 2013, she participated in the Arctic Circle residency to Svalbard, supported by a grant from the Independence Foundation.

Burko’s practice (since 2006) at the intersection of art and science focuses on issues of climate change. Originally basing her imagery on research and visual data from scientists, she soon moved to bear witness directly in the Polar regions. In her painting projects such as Politics of Snow and Polar Investigations she explores visual strategies, translating data into imagery.  In her recent photo projects, Deep Time and Elegy, that effort continues more metaphorically and abstractly. She sees melting glaciers as a key indicator of climate change. Before sailing around Svalbard in 2013 she joined a team of geologists in the Northern most research station in the world - Ny-Alesund, where she flew and landed on top of glaciers for two days. In February and March 2017 Diane explored melting glaciers in New Zealand’s southern Alps as well as rainforests and the Barrier Reef in Australia.

 Public engagement is integral to her practice – she appears on panels and colloquium on art and science, speaks to school children, think tanks, Conservancy groups and professional conferences such as the AGU and GSA and at the Academy of Natural Sciences, as well as at INSTAAR where she is an affiliate. Her most recent talk was at the 2017 International Cryosphere Conference in Wellington NZ.

From May 4 to September 30, 2017, the Walton Arts Center will feature her solo exhibition: Glacial Shifts/ Changing Perspectives: Bearing Witness to Climate Chang. as the visual component to their Artosphere Festival.   

Click here to view Diane Burko's full CV

CV

Education

1966 - Skidmore College, BA - Painting & Art History

1969 - University of Pennsylvania, Graduate School of Fine Arts, MFA

  

Grants, Fellowships, Awards, Commissions

2016

Nominated for Anonymous Was A Woman

2013

Independence Foundation Fellowship in the Arts

2011

WCA Lifetime Achievement Award, Women's Caucus for Art

2000

Bessie Berman Grant in Painting, The Leeway Foundation

1996

“One Percent” Public Art Commission awarded by the Redevelopment Authority of Philadelphia, Marriott Hotel, Philadelphia

1993

Residence Fellowship at the Bellagio Study and Conference Center, The Rockefeller Foundation, September

1991-92, 1985-86

National Endowment for the Arts Visual Arts Fellowship

1989

Residence Fellowship at Giverny, Readers Digest Foundation, April – September

1989, 1981

Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Individual Artists Grant

 

Public Collections

Air Co. Corporation, Montvale, NJ
                      

American Telephone and Telegraph Center
                      

ARCO, Philadelphia
                      

Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL 
                      

AVC Corporation, Philadelphia
                      

BankAmerica, CA
                      

Blue Cross of Southern California
                      

CIGNA Corporation, Philadelphia
                      

Colgate University, Picker Art Gallery, Hamilton, NY
                      

Commodities Corporation of America, NY
                      

Continental Bank, Philadelphia 
                      

De Cordova Museum, Lincoln, MA
                      

Denver Art Museum, CO
                      

First Pennsylvania Bank, Philadelphia
                      

FMC Corporation, Philadelphia
                      

General Public Utilities Corporation of Reading, Reading, PA
                      

Goldman and Sachs, New York
                      

Hahnemann Hospital, Philadelphia
                      

Hay Associates, Philadelphia
                      

Hood Museum of Art, Hanover, NH
                      

IBM, Tucson, AZ
                      

James A. Michener Art Museum, Doylestown, PA
                      

Ken Parker and Associates, Philadelphia
                      

Mobil Oil Corporation, Washington, D.C.
                      

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia
                      

Petro-Lewis Corporation, Denver, CO
                      

The Pew Charitable Trusts
                      

The Philadelphia Museum of Art
                      

The Prudential Insurance Company of America, Newark, NJ
                      

Reader’s Digest, Pleasantville, NY
                      

Reading Public Museum, Reading, PA
                      

Rutgers University Collection, Stedman Art Gallery, Camden, NJ
                      

Security Pacific National Bank, CA
                      

Smith, Kline and French, Philadelphia

Tucson Museum of Art, Tucson, AZ
                      

University of New Mexico, Tamarind Collection, Albuquerque, NM
                      

Wells Fargo Bank, CA
                      

Woodmere Art Museum, Philadelphia

Zimmerli Art Museum, New Brunswick, NJ