Diane Victor received her BA Fine Arts Degree from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg with a major in Printmaking. In addition to graduating with distinction and winning various awards, Victor also became the youngest recipient of the prestigious Volkskas Atelier Award in 1988. The Volkskas Award granted Victor a ten-month stay at the Cité International des Artes in Paris, allowing her time to work collaboratively with other experienced printmakers and to observe and reflect on a society very different from her own.
Since 1990, Victor has been a part-time lecturer, teaching drawing and printmaking, at various South African institutions including the University of Pretoria, Wits Technikon, Pretoria Technikon, Open Window Academy, Vaal Triangle Technikon, the University of the Witwatersrand, Rhodes University and the University of Johannesburg.
Diane Victor and David Krut Print Workshop (DKW) first collaborated in early 2008 on three large etchings. Of these works (After Eden, Lot’s Wife, and Bluebeard’s Wife) Bronwyn Law-Viljoen has written: “Diane Victor’s work is usually described as social commentary, but what critics often miss, perhaps because her strong imagery repels the squeamish or faint-hearted before they can get a proper look, is its humour, either in the form of biting satire or revealed in the artist’s wry self-deprecation. Since the seriousness of Victor’s work is also, in part, a product of her extraordinary obsession with detail, viewers often need to spend time with the images to appreciate the ways in which Victor resolves the tension between technique and subject matter. A trio of prints created at David Krut Print Workshop confirms this latter observation, showing not only Victor’s superb draughtsmanship and skill as a printmaker, but demonstrating her ability to strike a balance between seriousness and comedy.”
In 2009, in a change to her usual methods of working, Victor originated and editioned a series of drypoints at DKW, called Birth of a Nation. These works were exhibited at David Krut Projects, New York, as well as a selection featuring at her show at Grinnell College, Iowa in early 2011.
This publication was followed in January 2012 by Burning the Candle at Both Ends, published to co-incide with Victor’s two-part exhibition Ashes to Ashes and Smoke to Dust which was held in collaboration by David Krut Projects and the University of Johannesburg Art Gallery. The exhibition ran from November 2011 until the end of January 2012. Selected work from this show was later exhibited at David Krut Projects, Johannesburg.
Victor has completed two residencies in the United States with David Krut Projects, New York. During the first residency in 2011 Victor created a series of watercolour monotypes in collaboration with master printer Phil Sanders. She returned to America in 2012 and during this time DKW facilitated the collaboration between Victor and the Robert Blackburn Printmaking Studio. During this period Victor created the works Let Sleeping Crocs Lie, The Grand Magician, The Sower, Jonny and the Bunny Boy, One Night, and Ash which were first exhibited by David Krut Projects at the 2012 Johannesburg Art Fair, and were later editioned by Jillian Ross and Mlungisi Kongisa from DKW.
In late 2012 and early 2013 Victor completed a residency in China. One of the works created during this time – The Rhino Who Looks At the Sky – is available from David Krut Projects, Arts on Main. Following David Krut Projects’ participation in Multiplied 2013, the suite of Birth of a Nation was purchased by the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.