If anyone could be referred to as a renaissance woman, it would be appropriate to describe Dianne Panarelli Miller as such. Yet the word “renaissance” literally translates to “rebirth,” and that does not accurately describe Miller, who has steadily and unerringly followed a path of artistic exploration from a very young age. After a failed attempt to learn the piano due to a lack of both passion and talent, Miller impressed the first in a life of tutors with her visual artistic abilities. A scholarship to Boston University when she was 15 years old was the first stop in her lifelong pursuit of learning. After high school she studied at Boston’s Vesper George School of Art, where she was “taught by real artists, not teachers who went to school to teach art,” Miller explains.
Her relationship with two teachers from Vesper George, Robert Cormier and Robert Douglas Hunter, led to an opportunity to study at their newly founded R.H. Ives Gammel Atelier. Miller credits the intensive eight-hour per day discipline of the Atelier with empowering her with the classic building blocks of accomplished painters. “All of my life, I have serendipitously found the right place to be taught as an artist,” she says. “It was at the Atelier that I really discovered what I wanted to do, and I met the right people to lead me down this path.”
Miller has been painting, full-time, year-round, for 40 years, is represented by several galleries throughout New England, and is passing on her tutelage to others with a robust teaching schedule that spans from the Cape to the South Shore. She also organizes art trips to Europe and most recently, last year, traveled on her own to a starkly different landscape: Wyoming. “That was one of the best things I have ever done in my life. I drove cross-country and spent a month out there painting; I did 54 paintings in a month,” she recalls. “It was a true adventure. I didn’t know the people I ended up staying with, so it was almost like being at a summer camp. The whole thing was well organized. We had shows, we met great people, including other artists. Next year we plan to do it again, but take people with us, do workshops and show them around.” Miller says that the Brinton Museum in Big Horn, one of the most highly renowned museums in the country, is hosting a show of work by the artists who were there last year. “It’s pretty exciting and daunting at the same time,” she confesses.
Miller’s depth of instruction and experience has left her with the rare and valuable ability to work quickly in almost any environment. Combine that with her unbridled sense of adventure, and she can be found painting on location most every afternoon. “People come from all over to the Cape and everyone wants a Cape Cod scene, so I generally sell off the easel when I’m painting iconic scenes around the Cape,” Miller explains. Imagine the story collectors have to share—an Atelier-trained artist, capturing the beauty of the surrounding environment, and a chance encounter. It sounds like a story for generations to come.
Dianne Miller’s work can be found at several galleries across New England, including
South Street Gallery, Hingham, and J. Todd Galleries, Wellesley. visit diannepmiller.com