Diana Baker Smith is an artist and lecturer at UNSW Art & Design with expertise in contemporary art theory, practice led research and performance studies.
Diana’s artistic practice spans performance, moving image and installation, and her research is broadly concerned with artistic labour, institutional critique and the production of art history. Through her solo practice and as a member of the art collective Barbara Cleveland, her work has been exhibited at the 20th Biennale of Sydney, Art Gallery of NSW, Museum of Contemporary Art, Artspace and Sydney Opera House in Sydney; Australian Centre for Contemporary Art, National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne; Art Gallery of South Australia in Adelaide; Queensland Art Gallery/Gallery of Modern Art in Brisbane; Physics Room in Christchurch; National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art in Seoul; and Hayward Gallery in London. Diana has received awards and prizes from Australia Council for the Arts, Create NSW, National Association of Visual Artists and Copyright Australia. She was the 2017 recipient of Australia Council’s International Residency at ACME studios in London, and Barbara Cleveland were the 2016 recipients of the One Year Studio Program at Artspace in Sydney.
In 2017 Diana completed her PhD at UNSW Art and Design, receiving the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Postgraduate Research. Her thesis, titled Re-doing the Histories of Performance: Re-enactment and the Historiographies of Live Art, analysed forms of re-enactment and performance-fiction as modes of feminist historiographical intervention. Diana’s essays and performance texts have been published in Performance Paradigm, Live Art Almanac, Artlink and Un Magazine and she has curated exhibitions and performance programs including: Moving Histories/Future Projections (dLux MediaArts and Museums and Galleries NSW, 2017-2020), and Cinemania (Museum of Contemporary Art, CarriageWorks, 2011-2013). Diana is a former director of the Sydney artist run gallery Firstdraft, and was an editorial board member for Runway magazine.
Diana convenes Studio Art Practice (DART1001), Honours Research Project (DART4101), and Moving Image (DART1230) in the Bachelor of Fine Arts program. She supervisors postgraduate students in art history and artistic practice, working across a range of topics including feminist histories and temporalities, queer archives, institutional critique, parody and post-digital painting practices, endurance performance and artistic re-enactments.