On the occasion of launching Diane Maclean’s new sculpture Diabolo on the de Havilland Campuswe spoke to the artist and UH alumna about her sculpture practice. Watch this conversation as she talks about her exceptional career, shares insights into how she works and what inspires her. She also gives tips for new graduates and artists, and reflects on how studying at the University of Hertfordshire has informed her career.

Diane Maclean has a distinguished career as sculptor, having created many public artworks over the last 30 years. She became a member of Court of the University of Hertfordshire and her work is part of the University’s Art Collection, which you can explore on campus with the Sculpture Walk.

Left: Mountains sculpture, steel mirrored pointy shapes in the shape of a mountain. Right: copper coloured cones

Left: Diane Maclean, Wing, 2018;  Right: Diane Maclean, Encampment, 2003, Cass Sculpture Foundation.

Sculptures Left: Sky Cirles ; steel circles titiled on top of each other and sculpture:  Diabolo; purple chrome cone with thin centre like a diabolo toy.

Left: Diane Maclean, Sky Circles, 2018;    Right:  Diane Maclean, Diabolo, 2018 


Diane Maclean was born in London of Scottish descent. She studied Modern Languages at University College London (1956-59) and then lived abroad with her husband mainly in Africa between 1961 and 1975. Throughout the 1970’s she won many portrait commissions in Europe, USA, Canada and South Africa and exhibited at the Royal Society of Portrait Painters.

In 1980 she entered the Hertfordshire College of Art & Design to study sculpture (1980-85). Her inclusion in the ‘New Contemporaries’ exhibition in 1986 launched her current career and since then she has participated in numerous shows in the UK, Europe, the Baltic countries, Scandinavia, Canada, Japan and China. Her art practice includes public commissions and temporary installations, such as Dundee Airport, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, Xscape Milton Keynes and the University of Hertfordshire. Her most recent solo exhibition was Salisbury Cathedral, 2019.

Upcoming: 2021 will see exhibitions at Burghley House and St Albans Cathedral – find out more at the artist’s website: 
Diane Maclean.