Dianna Settles’ (b. 1989) practice examines what it is to exist as part of a collective, portraying how culture, politics, and ideologies intertwine in community. Forms are arranged symbolically in poetic compositions, placing portraits of friends into potent moments in time. Bathhouses, prisons, and gathering places are depicted in conversation, while blooming patterns, details, and colors are woven into the scenes. Settles draws from Western tradition, as well as from the art history of her father’s native Vietnam, mindfully synthesizing multiple lineages while recontextualizing marginalized bodies.
Dianna Settles was born in 1989 in Los Alamitos, CA, and grew up in Blue Ridge, GA. She lives and works in Atlanta, Georgia. Settles received her BFA from the San Francisco Art Institute in 2014. Her solo exhibitions include Olly Olly Oxen Free at Institute 193 (Lexington, KY) in 2021, 99 Flowers at Versa Gallery and Hi-Lo Press (Chattanooga, TN, Atlanta, GA) in 2018, and HI LO at Runaway Studio (Pittsburgh, PA), among others. Settles had also exhibited with MARCH (New York, NY), MINT Gallery (Atlanta, GA), the High Museum (Atlanta, GA), Delaplane (San Francisco, CA), and the San Francisco Art Institute( San Francisco, CA), among others.
As the inaugural artist of Living Walls’ international exchange program, Settles completed an 180 foot-long mural titled: To Our Friends / Á Nos Amis in Paris, France in July of 2019. She has also completed murals in Atlanta, Oakland, and Pittsburgh. Settles was a finalist for the 2019 Forward Arts Foundation Edge Award, and was recently accepted into the Atlanta Contemporary Studio Artist Program. In addition to her own art practice, Settles runs Hi-Lo Press, a print studio and art gallery in Atlanta.