Diane Arenberg is an artist who enjoys the challenges and rewards of working in many mediums. A resident of Mequon, Wisconsin, and Santa Fe, New Mexico, she pursues her love of creativity in pastel, paint, ceramics, stone, printmaking, and metalsmithing. The common thread amongst all these mediums is her passion for the landscape, nature, light, and texture. She derives much of her inspiration from the Midwest and Southwest, particularly New Mexico and Arizona, where she spends several weeks a year painting on location, or “en plein air”.
Arenberg began formal art studies at the University of Illinois and continued in the arts at Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, where she received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Humanities, specializing in Interior Design. After spending ten years in the contract design field, Arenberg felt the pull to return to art. In 1986, she enrolled in post-baccalaureate Art Therapy and Alcoholism Counseling programs at the Thomas Merton Institute. In 1994, while working as an art therapist in a drug and alcohol rehabilitation hospital, she realized that her true calling was to be a fine artist.
Much of Arenberg’s training has been through classes and workshops with pastel artists such as Doug Dawson, Sally Strand, and Albert Handell, sculptors Paul Yank, Mary Davidson, and Jim Kempes, and jewelers Gene Pijanowski, John Strachota, Dale Smith, Judith Foster, and Mary Anna Petrick. She has continually broadened her scope of knowledge through stone carving, jewelry, bronze cast and found object sculpture workshops taken at Ghost Ranch Conference and Retreat Center in Abiquiu, New Mexico. It was there that she first painted with four women who joined her in a group now known as the Color Rangers.