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Artist Lake Resident Profile - Diane Oliva

Submitted by John Carricato

Dec 30, 2022

To see and hear more about Diane's art call her at 631-448-8162

While taking a walk through the complex this summer I struck up a conversation with a neighbor. She struck me as a pleasant woman. Diane was on her patio, straightening up and tending to her garden. The building 11 roof had just been replaced. Our conversation started with a simple hello. After initial pleasantries I introduced myself as the editor and publisher of, what was at the time, our nascent newsletter. Little did I know that I was speaking to a woman who achieved many accomplishments as an artist, teacher and community volunteer. As Diane and I continued chatting, I asked if she would be interested in being profiled in our newsletter. She said she’d think about it.

Some time later Diane invited me to her unit, to talk about a potential article. I very much enjoyed  our talks learning  a little bit about Diane’s journey in art and her life’s work. What follows is a summary of this talented woman’s accomplishments in art.

As a young woman Diane studied portraiture at the Palau Studio in Northport, NY, where she received instruction in the European classical style. Diane went on to study Intaglio Printing at the Joy Jervis Studio, also in Northport.

Diane continued to hone her skills in drawing, portraiture and still life before attending Adelphi University, where she studied Humanities, Cultural Anthropology and Art History.  Her studies led to a rich travel experience. She studied art history and anthropology in Europe, Russia, India, Egypt, China and Ghana, West Africa. These experiences led her to be invited to jury many art exhibitions on the east coast.

In 1985 Diane began working at The Nassau County Museum of Art in Roslyn, where she remained for 22 years. At NCMA she represented the museum to local media and foreign dignitaries visiting for major exhibitions. At NCMA she taught portraiture, still life and college portfolio classes. 

In addition to her work at the museum, Diane ran the Oliva Art Studio in Saint James, NY, where she taught art, gave lectures, and held exhibitions and demonstrations featuring various local artists.

Diane moved to Florida in 2005. In Florida she taught at the Leesburg Center for the Arts where in 2009 she earned teacher of the year, and began entering her work in art exhibitions.

In 2010 Diane won two awards, Best in Show and 1st Place in pastels at the Central Florida Creative Arts Exhibition. The prize-winning painting was a pastel entitled “Remember”. The piece has a military memorial theme. Dominant in the work is a large “T” shaped cross with a helmet and American flag at its base. In the distance is a heavenly city with the Twin Towers.

In 2016 Diane returned to Long Island, making her home in Artist Lake Condominium, to be closer to her family. Diane continues to paint and show her work.

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