Enriching the Arts

Featured Artist: Diane Howard Langlois, ASA

Iceberg Tunnel Acrylic1

Diane Howard Langlois, Iceberg Tunnel


I am both an artist and a social scientist, an extreme painter dedicated to painting the most remote, desolate and inhospitable regions of the world. My career began as a radio and television news reporter, so you could say I am still writing stories, but non-verbal visual narratives in paintings of mixed media. Most people do not realize that NEWS is just an acronym for all the information from the north, east, west and south. For the past decade, I have been focusing most of my energy into discovering the issues of the north and south climes because they are rapidly changing and, in some places, disappearing.

The circumpolar regions are some of the most fascinating places on earth. However, they are fast becoming sites of potential conflict and controversy. A pristine natural wilderness, a new frontier packed with economic opportunities, a laboratory for scientific research, sovereignty claims and a homeland for many aboriginal people. The north and south Polar Regions continue to inspire all that come into contact with it.

ICU Acrylic and Oil Svalbard Norway

Diane Howard Langlois, Svalbard Norway

For the past century, the Arctic and Antarctic have had a natural allure to explorers, adventurers, scientists, and academics. Today photographers, artists, authors and environmentalists are being drawn toward both polar poles in increasing numbers. Through my work I try to convey the experience of visiting places which most people will never have the opportunity to see. I try to make my paintings compelling nature scenes that capture the social, cultural, scientific and economic stresses placed on these fragile environments.

As an artist I also believe we should be a mirror of our times, reflecting contemporary issues which in turn will become a type of historical documentation of the 21st century. I have a Master’s Degree in Science and a Doctorate in Communication Studies with a cognate in Information Technology; so I believe in empirical data, direct observation and qualitative and quantitative measures. These factors are embedded in my work, both my knowledge as a scientist and my vision as an artist, a personal lens to reveal the mystery and fascination of some of our vast polar coastlines. I hope that my boldly coloured canvases also impart a sense of my personality, curiosity, humour and historical significance to these largely uninhabited and fragile places.

Three Taking A Break South Georgia Great Britain

Diane Howard Langlois, Three Taking A Break

Q & A with the ASA

ASA: Can you tell us about your influences?

Diane: My influences include some of the greatest explorers and artists of our time. My work pays tribute to Dr. Elisha Kane and Dr. Edward Wilson, who both drew and painted fine sketches from their traverses in the Polar Regions. I admire polar painters such as Caspar David Friedrich’s “Arctic Shipwreck” or Sir Edwin Landseer’s “Man Proposes God Disposes” finely painted portrayals of the conflict between man and nature. I also give a paintbrush nod to Rockwell Kent, and the Canadian greats of Lauren Harris, Emily Carr and Doris McCarthy.

ASA: What would you consider to be your most successful body of work?

Diane: I think my most successful body of work to date have been my latest polar paintings. They make up my first solo show, “North & South”


ASA and TREX Address

Crossroads Art Centre
#302 - 1235 26th Avenue SE
Calgary, AB T2G 1R7
ASA Phone: (403) 265-0012
TREX Phone: (403) 262-4669

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