Approved: 16.09.2013

Diana Ali

Artist, Curator, Lecturer / academic

Approved: 16.09.2013
  • Location: Nottingham, East Midlands
  • Activities: Higher education, Lecturing, Workshops, Training delivery, Curating
  • Categories: Curatorial, Drawing, Intervention, Mixed Media, Text
  • Tags: Visual Arts, Curating, lecturing, research, collaboration, international, HE, workshops, mentoring, course author.


Diana Ali was born in Rusholme, Manchester to Bangladeshi 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.

Her practice involves fictional writing, drawing, installation, a play on language and text and direct animation. She is interested in correspondence, networking, connectivity, collaboration and the met and un-met through curating as an extended art practice and research. She explores lines of cultural divides and brings fragments of different cultures in one space, usually in un-white cube galleries.

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. She has also curated the ‘Defamiliarization’ touring exhibition in London and Sheffield where her work explored artists’ responses from the local to the global. Internationally, she has curated in countries with cultural divides; ‘A State of Un-Play’ at Atelier 35 in Romania and ‘Engagement and Entrapment’ in Israel/Palestine, Cyprus and South Korea.

In addition to being a visual artist and curator, she is also a lecturer, freelance workshop leader, an arts educator and creative mentor. She has lectured at Huanghui University in China and in Italy. She is currently lecturing at Derby College, leading the Pre-Deree Foundation at Grantham College and the Open College of Arts tutoring degree students and where she has written the Level 6 course for Professional Practice. Her current workshops include working with well-being learners at the Nottingham Society of artists and an artist in residence for Derbyshire & Nottinghamshire medieval archeology.

CV & Education



2007           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.






Visual Artist, Independent curator, Workshop Leader, Arts Educator and lecturer, Visiting Lecturer, 1-1 Tutor, Creative Mentor, Artist in Residence, External Moderator.
























‘A State of Un-Play’ Atelier 35, Romania.




Project Manager for ‘Parallel Universe’ as part of IAQA. BarLane Studios, York.


Fringe Arts Bath (FAB) Guest Curator ‘Mis-IN-Formation




‘double lives: duple trials’ The Malt Cross Gallery, Nottingham




Dialogues: A Fake Romance?’ Elysium Gallery, Swansea




‘Subversive Correspondence’. Touring exhibition, Bristol and London



Curator. ‘Olfaction’. Empty Shop Gallery, Durham.


Assistant Curator for Pop Samiti. London, UK.




Curator for ‘Up & Coming’, CUC Northwest, Liverpool, UK. 


Co-Curator for ‘One Night Stands’, London, UK


Touring Exhibition.  ‘Defamiliarization’.  Site Gallery, Sheffield, The Gallery, Wimbledon,London, The END Gallery, Sheffield, UK.










{C}·           ‘Revolver:R’ Arrow Book Publishing 2013


{C}·           Author of ‘Professional Practice’ Course, Level 6. OCA


{C}·           ‘Failure’, Sheffield


{C}·           Selling and Buying Art by Kesha Bruce, Iowa, US.


{C}·               A Book about Death curated by Sonja Benskin Mesher RCA.



{C}·           Interventions Part 1: Dispersal. Anneka French. October and November 2009.


{C}·           Platform58 Art Magazine. ‘Aftermath’ p.28/29.


{C}·           Tuckerman, L (2009) Hybrid. Art and Science Collaboration in Yorkshire. ‘Pill Gardens’ P47.


{C}·           Nottingham Arts and Literature. ‘Aftermath’. BBC Online.May 2001.





2012                        ‘She Blocks the Highway’, group exhibition, Hong Kong's annual Fotanian Studio Open event (


2011                        ‘Google Me This’, The Library Artspace, Victoria, Australia.


2010            World Wide Art Books, International Dictionary of Artists,  Santa Barbara, California, USA. 2010.


2010            ‘A Book About Death’ Originally shown at The Emily Harvey Foundation, New York. Curated by Sonja Benskin Mesher RCA, MOMA, Wales, 2010.


2010            Fine Art Bivoucs in collaboration with J.Damron. Nevada. Crafts Fair, San Francisco.


2008            Artforum Ad Project by Jeff Thompson, Nebraska, USA.


{C}2008                  Other Asias- Current 2: REDO PAKISTAN. Symposium as part of the part of the Shanakht Festival and is in collaboration with VASL international artist collective. Karachi, Pakistan.



{C}2007                  ‘Defamiliarization’ Disarmory Newspaper by the db Foundation; New York. Vol1. 28-30 March 2008. 



2008                        Urban Jealousy /1st International Roaming Biennial of                                                          Tehran. Curated by Serhat koksal and Amirali Ghasemi





2013            ‘Home: Contemporary Female Masters’ Bulgarian Cultural Institute, Sofia Gallery, London.


2013                        ‘Digital Dialogues’ The Courtyard, Hereford.  


2012                        12X12X12, Bank Street, Sheffield.


2012            Accidentely on Purpose, Quad, Derby.


2012                        ‘Distant Dialogues’ in ‘Fixation’, WCS, Liverpool.


2011                        ‘HeadLies’ in ‘Experimental Installation’



2011                        Revolve:R collaborative book collaboration.


2011                        The RE….Show, High Wycombe.


2011                        Digital Dialogues; collaboration, London.


2011                        Notting Hill Mayfest, London.


2010                        Enter10 Watermans, London.


2010                        ‘Voices’ Exhibition, City Arts and The Institute of Mental Health,Nottingham.


2010            ‘Distant Dialogues’. A year long exhibition at Sheffield Hallam University as part of the Creative Sparks exhibition.


2010                       ‘Endgame’ Persisitence Works, Sheffield



2009                        ‘Pleasurewood Thrills’. The Workstation, Sheffield.



2009            ‘Distant Dialogues’ in Interventions Part1: Dispersal. Curated by Anneka French.


2009                        ‘A Cup of Tea Solves Everything’, Forfey Festival


2009                        Aspects of Language and Translation, Mile End Art Pavilion, London


2009                        ‘Writing’s on the Wall’, Artlink, Hull


2009                        Dhoom Dhamaka, 2nd Generation, Asian Arts Week at RISC, Reading


2009                        ‘Post-Authorship’ at SoAnyway


2009                        ‘Food for Thought’ Brent Artists Resource. The Gallery at Willesdan                                   Green. London, UK.


2009                        ‘Indigenous Arts 2009. Durban House Heritage Centre. Eastwood.                                                Nottinghamshire.


2009            ‘On CDOs and Double Clubs. August Art. London


2008                        ‘The Gift’. ‘Post-Authorship’. Nexus Café. Manchester.


2008                        ‘Hung, Drawn and Quartered.’ Moogie Wonderland. Kent.


2008                        ‘Synesthesia: Collective Gallery’                                                                                       


2008                        This Is Not A Gateway (TINAG Festival), London



2008                        Summer Festival, Atelier East, Angles Theatre, Cambridge



2008            ‘           ‘Defamiliarization’ Airspace Gallery; Dialogue Box. Hanley.


2008                        ‘You’ve got some explaining to do’. The Common Room.                                                     Leeds.



2007                        ‘SeeD’ Surface gallery, Nottingham


2007                        ‘Small Works: Art Shed Installation.. Mantle Arts,                                                                     Leicestershire.


2007                        ‘Anytown; artists response to the urban environment’                                                                         Mascalls Gallery, Paddock Wood, Kent


2007                        ‘ID:entity’ West End Centre, Hampshire.                                                                                         


2007                        Found Drawings. Loughborough University.                                                                 


{C}2007  {C}          ‘Delicate Situations’ 








2013                                    OCA. Level 6 Author for Professional Practice Module.

2011                                    OCA- BA Painting, Drawing and Watercolour.

2011                        Grantham College, Access to HE, Life Drawing, Course Leader BTEC Foundation Diploma, A Level.

2010                                    Derby College, Lecturer, Derby.

2010                        Visiting lecturer, Castle College.

2010                                    Art & Design Lecturer, Huanghuai University, China

2009                                    Visiting lecturer to various mountain schools, Susa, Italy

2010                                    Artist in Residence. Holy Trinity Primary School

2010                                    Artist in Residence. Gedling Comprensive School.

2010                                    Adult Evening Classes ‘Art for All’ A beginners guide.

2009                        Open Studies Lecturer. Centre for LifeLong Learning. University of Warwick    ‘Art Techniques from Different Cultures’.

2009                        Creative Partnership- Holly Primary School. ‘Interpreting African Art’

Connecting Classrooms, a British Council Project.

2009                        Art Tutor for Workers Educational Association (WEA Adult & Family Learning)

2008                                   Art and Design Teacher. Nottingham Boys High School.

2008                                    1-1 home tutor. Academic and study skills support. Ages 10- PG

2003- 2008                        Team Leader. Art & Design.

                                 Course leader, BTEC National Diploma in Art & Design,        

                                 A Level Course Leader Art & Design.

                                 Work Wise (Entry Level) lecturer. Outreach programmes.

                                 South East Derbyshire College. UK.




{C}·      Wisemoves - cultural workshops

{C}·      Learning Works- Youth work

{C}·      Billesley Extended Services, Birmingham. World Mask Making workshop,

{C}·      Big Lottery Funded Project- Family Learning arts and crafts workshops, Nottingham.

{C}·      1 Goal FIFA World Campaign workshops to physically impaired,Nottingham.

{C}·      ABC Arts- Cultural Diversity workshops, Mansfield.

{C}·      Workshop Network- Global Arts, national.

{C}·      Nottingham City Council- Travellers workshops, Nottingham.

{C}·      Derby Deaf Group- Adult learning

{C}·      Global Arts, Holmcroft Library, Stafford.

{C}·      Global Children’s’ Educational Network: Sari Workshop, Brighton.

{C}·      Trap Media: ‘Mask Making’ and ‘Puppet’ Workshop, Mosaic Workshop,

{C}·      ‘Visual versus the Verbal’ Humber Literary Festival. (ages 16+), Hull.

{C}·      Catmose Gallery- ‘Global Art’ ‘Identity’ & ‘Nature’ workshops (ages 6-16+), Leicestershire.





2013                                    Assessor BA Painting and Creative Courses OCA.

2011                                    External moderator for OCR GCE Art & Design.

2010                                    Creative Mentor for Derby University’ Connect’ art practice course

2009                        Transversal European Study Trip to Italy Smart education with art. Working with rural disadvantaged children.





Institute for Learning (IFL), A-N : The Artists Information Company, Air-Activist, Nottingham Asian Artists Network, Mainstream Partnerships, Wooloo (Berlin), Axis: Curator membership, (Amsterdam), Between Creation, CultureGen, Artabase, Beyond Borders, ArtSelector, Open Visor, RiseArt, British Women Artists.





2010                        JP Gallery Northampton

{C}2008                  Castle College. Visiting Fine Art Lecturer. Industries Day.

{C}2009                  Artist Talk. Artlink Gallery. Hull.




2007                                    Eaton Fund.