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"Diane's work connects us to the enormity of what is happening in the natural world and the amazing speed with which these changes are taking place. These paintings also connect us to something else. Even as Diane documents how things are changing, she also reminds us of the stunning beauty of nature and, in turn, the urgency of doing everything in our power to protect it. Words alone can't come close to doing that."
-Eileen Claussen, President, Pew Center on Global Climate Change

Diane Burko is a photographer and painter concerned with representing the ever changing majesty, vastness, and epic character of the natural world. Her fascination with the edges of continents, volcanoes, glaciers, and hot springs can be seen throughout her work along with her interest in climate change. This interest manifested in Burko's 2010 project, Politics of Snow, a series of paintings based in historical photographs of geological sites over time that dramatically illustrate changes to each area due to global warming. Though she originally painted solely en plein air, she now also uses photographs as inspiration for her paintings and creates photographs for exhibition as well.

Burko often travels internationally in search of subjects for her photographs and paintings. She has traveled to and worked in Iceland, Italy, Costa Rica, and Giverny, France among other international locations. Additionally, she has visited parts of the United States including New Orleans, the Grand Canyon, Hawaii, and Alaska for her work. Burko lives part-time in Philadelphia and part-time in Point Pleasant, where she also works in dialog with the local landscape.

The Michener Art Museum has exhibited Burko's work in a number of exhibitions including Diane Burko: Flow (2006), Creative Hand, Discerning Heart: Story, Symbol, Self, Part One (2012), and Rising Tides: Contemporary Art and the Ecology of Water (2020).

Video by Jim Thornton for the Michener Art Museum. Creative Hand, Discerning Heart: Story, Symbol, Self, Part One, artists videos, 2012.


Connections to Bucks County
Diane Burko lives part-time in Point Pleasant, Bucks County. While Burko depicts landscapes from locales far from Bucks County, such as Iceland, Italy, Hawaii, and Costa Rica, in her work she is also interested in nature found close to home. She lives part time in a cabin in Point Pleasant with her husband Richard Ryan, a landscape designer. The cabin and its surrounding verdant gardens have become another of Burko’s projects and have, in fact, become a destination for area nature enthusiasts. Her fascination with the plants and landscape of Pennsylvania has also manifested in Burko’s paintings. Her interest is evident in her photographs and paintings such as Bucks County (2006) and Wissahickon Reflections (1995-1998). Wissahickon Reflections (1995-1998) is Burko’s suite of three large and immersive paintings for the Philadelphia Marriott Hotel, depicting the Wissahickon Valley landscape as reflected in the area’s winding creek.

Education and Training

Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY, Bachelors in Painting & Art History, 1966
University of Pennsylvania, Graduate School of Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA, Masters of Fine Art, 1969

Arnold Bittleman

Claude Monet, Vincent Van Gogh, Pierre Bonnard and Gustave Courbet


Major Solo Exhibitions
Water Matters, Lewallen Galleries, Santa Fe, NM, 2012
Politics of Snow II, Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School, Bernstein Gallery, Princeton, NJ, 2011
Politics of Snow, Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, PA, 2010
Alumni Invitational II: Diane Burko, Linda Karshon, Joshua Marks, Bing Wright, Tang Museum, Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY, 2007
Diane Burko: Closer to Home, Philadelphia International Airport, Philadelphia, PA, 2007
Flow, Tufts University Art Gallery, Aidekman Arts Center, Medford, MA, 2006
Flow, Michener Art Museum, Doylestown, PA, 2006
Diane Burko: Photographs, Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, PA, 2006
Earth, Water, Fire, Ice, Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, PA, 2004
The Volcano Series, Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, PA, 2001
A Sense of Place: Paintings by Diane Burko,The Parthenon Museum, Nashville, TN, 1999
Luci ed Ombra di Bellagio: The Light and Diane Burko at Giverny, National Academy of Sciences, Washington D.C., 1991
Reflets: Paintings from Giverny, Marian Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, PA, 1990
Diane Burko: 1985-1987, Marian Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, PA, 1988
Fifteen Years: 1972-1987, Hollins College, Roanoke, VA, 1987
Waterways of Pennsylvania, Marian Locks Gallery (traveling), Philadelphia, PA, 1983
Mary H. Dana Woman Artists Series, Mable Smith Douglass Library, Douglass College, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, 1982
Stefanotti Gallery, New York, NY, 1982
Morris Gallery, The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA, 1980
Stefanotti Gallery, New York, NY, 1980
Bucknell University, Lewisburg, PA, 1980
First Distinguished Alumni Award Exhibition, Skidmore College, Saratoga Springs, NY, 1979
Genesis Galleries Ltd., New York, NY, 1979
Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ, 1977
Marian Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, PA, 1976
O.K. Harris Gallery, New York, NY, 1976
Philadelphia Art Alliance, Philadelphia, PA, 1973
Chatham College, Pittsburgh, PA, 1972
College of Textiles and Science, Philadelphia, PA, 1971

Major Group Exhibitions

Rising Tides: Contemporary Art and the Ecology of Water, James A. Michener Art Museum, Doylestown, PA, 2020
The Female Gaze: Women Artists Making Their World, Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art, Philadelphia, PA, 2012-2013
Creative Hand, Discerning Heart: Story, Symbol, Self, Michener Art Museum, Doylestown, PA, 2012
Parting Gifts: Artists Honor Bruce Katsiff, Director/CEO, 1989-2012, Michener Art Museum, Doylestown, PA, 2012
Value of Water, Cathedral of St. John the Divine, New York, NY, 2011-2012
Double Exposure and Politics of Snow, Erie Art Museum, Erie, PA, 2011-2012
Response, Remembrance, Reflection: Artists of Philadelphia and the 10 Year Anniversary of September 11, Woodmere Art Musuem, Philadelphia, PA, 2011
Same: Difference, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts Museum, Annenberg Gallery, Philadelphia, PA, 2010-2011
An Evolving Legacy: Twenty Years of Collecting at the James A. Michener Art Museum, Doylestown, PA, 2009-2010
Trouble in Paradise: Examining Discord Between Nature and Society, Tucson Museum of Art, Tucson, AZ, 2009
New Hope: Art and the River, Michener Art Museum, New Hope, PA, 2008
Photography 26, Perkins Center for the Arts, Moorestown, NJ, 2007
The Grand Canyon: From Dream to Icon, Tucson Museum of Art, Tucson, AZ, 2006
Works on Paper from the Permanent Collection, Pennsylvania Academy of Art, Philadelphia, PA, 2006
Out of the Blue, Abington Art Center, Jenkintown, PA, 2006
Torrid, Sharadin Art Gallery, Kutztown University, PA, 2005
Terrestrial Forces, Florida State University Museum of Fine Arts, Tallahassee, FL, 2004
Editions, Locks Gallery, Philadelphia, PA, 2003
Extreme Landscape, Hunterdon Museum of Art, Clinton, NJ, 2003
The American River, Brattleboro Museum and Art Center (traveling), Brattleboro, VT, 2002-2003
Landscape-Mindscapes, Long Beach Island Foundation of the Arts and Sciences, Loveladies, NJ, 2002
Artists of the Commonwealth: Realism in Pennsylvania Painting 1950-2000, Michener Art Museum, Doylestown, PA; Southern Alleghenies Museum of Art, Loretto, PA; Erie Art Museum, Erie, PA; Westmoreland Museum of American Art,. Greensburg, PA; Everhart Museum of Art, Science, and Natural History, Scranton, PA; The State Museum, Harrisburg, PA, 2001-2002
Pictura Lucida: Paintings by the Established Artist Recipients of the Leeway Foundation Grants 2000, Philadelphia Art Alliance, Philadelphia, PA, 2000
Public Art: Concept, Process, Realization, Nexus Foundation for Today's Art, Philadelphia, PA, 1999
Through the Heart of the City: An Exhibition with the Schuylkill River as the Source of Inspiration, Philadelphia Art Alliance, Philadelphia, PA, 1998
An Extended View: Landscapes by Philadelphia Artists, Levy Gallery, Moore College of Art and Design, Philadelphia, PA, 1997
Women Artist Series 25th Anniversary Retrospective, Mary H. Dana Women Artist Series, Mabel Smith Douglass Library, Douglass College, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ, 1996
Chicago International Art Expositio
n, Chicago, IL
Landscape: Work by Women Artists, Bryn Mawr College, Bryn Mawr, PA, 1994
American Artists Abroad: Global Impressions, Lintas Worldwide, New York, NY, 1993
New Viewpoints: Contemporary American Women Realists, Seville World Expo American Pavillion, Seville, Spain, 1992
Art Now: Artists Choose Artists, Institute of Contemporary Art, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, 1991
Penn Prints: Thirty Years, Arthur Ross Gallery, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, 1990
Invitational Exhibition, The Watson Gallery, Houston, TX, 1989
American History: Women and the US Constitution, Atlanta College of Art, Atlanta, GA, 1988
The Luther W. Brady Collection of Deferred Gifts to the Picker Art Gallery: 20th Century Works on Paper, The Picker Art Gallery, Colgate University, Hamilton, NY, 1987
Artists and the Print, Maryland Art Institute, Baltimore, MD, 1986
Grand Canyon Revisited, Denver Museum of Natural History, Denver, CO, 1985
Drawings by Contemporary American Figurative Artists, Mezerhoff Gallery, Maryland College of Art, Baltimore, MD, 1984
Perspective on Contemporary American Realism: Works on Paper from the Collection of Jalane and Richard Davidson, Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL, 1983
New York Selections, Mitzi Landau Gallery, Los Angeles, CA, 1982
The American Landscape: Recent Developments, Whitney Museum of American Art, Fairfield County Branch, Stamford, CT, 1981
Trends of the 1970s, Moravian College Art Gallery, Bethlehem, PA, 1980
Rutgers National Drawing Exhibition, Stedman Art Gallery, Rutgers University, Camden, NJ, 1979
Cross References: The Photograph as a Point of Departure, Philadelphia College of Art, Philadelphia, PA, 1979
Painting and the Photograph, Philadelphia College of Art, Philadelphia, PA, 1979
Contemporary Drawings, The Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA, 1978
Art Today: USA, Iranian American Society Galleries, Tehran, Iran, 1977
Prints by Pennsylvania Artists, Museum of Art, Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA, 1976
Year of the Woman, Bronx Museum of the Arts, Bronx, NY, 1975
Woman's Work: 1974, Museum of the Philadelphia Civic Center, Philadelphia, PA, 1974
Eight Women Realists, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA, 1973
Painting and Photography: Something in Common, Philadelphia Museum of Art and Fleischer Art Memorial, Philadelphia, PA, 1972
Two Women: Paintings by Burko and Yanan, University Arts League, Philadelphia, PA, 1969

Major Collections
Art Institute of Chicago, Chicago, IL
Colgate University, Picker Art Gallery, Hamilton, NY
De Cordova Museum, Lincoln, MA
Goldman and Sachs, New York, NY
Hahnemann Hospital, Philadelphia, PA
Hood Museum of Art, Hanover, NH
IBM, Tucson, AZ
James A. Michener Art Museum, Doylestown, PA
Mobil Oil Corporation, Washington D.C.
Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA
The Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA
Reading Public Museum, Reading, PA
Rutgers University Collection, Stedman Art Gallery, Camden, NJ
University of New Mexico, Tamarind Collection, Albuquerque, NM
Woodmere Art Museum, Philadelphia, PA

Awards & Appointments

Major Awards
WCA Lifetime Achievement Award, Women's Caucus for Art, 2011
Bessie Berman Grant in Painting,
The Leeway Foundation, 2000
One Percent Public Art Commission awarded by the Redevelopment Authority of Philadelphia, Marriott Hotel, Philadelphia, 1996
Residence Fellowship at the Bellagio Study and Conference Center, The Rockefeller Foundation, September 1993
National Endowment for the Arts Visual Arts Fellowship, 1985-1986, 1991-1992
Distinguished Achievement Award, Skidmore College, 1991
Nominee for the AVA (Awards in the Visual Arts) national artist award, 1981, 1984, 1989, 1990
Patron Print Artist, Institute of Contemporary Art, 1989
Professional Prize, The Print Club of Philadelphia, 57th International Competition, 1981
Purchase Prize, Rutgers University National Drawing Show, New Brunswick, NJ, 1979

Teaching and Professional Appointments
Community College of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, PA, 1969-2000
Princeton University, Princeton, NJ, Visiting Professor, 1985
Anderson Ranch Arts Center, Snowmass, CO, Visiting Instructor, 1996
Lecturer, "On visiting Edna Andrade's Works on Paper Show," Woodmere Art Museum, PA, 2007
Panelist, "Women in Feminists Who Changed America," Women's Studies, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA, 2007
Visiting Critic for graduate painting students, School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, MA, 2006
Lecturer, Michener Art Museum, Doylestown, PA, 2006

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