Dione Page RWA, (b. 1936)

The Broken Barge, 1972, Watercolour and graphite on paper, 21 ¼ x 29 ½ in, Signed

[CAS 21] Acquired in 1973



Dione Page was brought up in Tolleshunt Major near Maldon, where her father had a farm. She started drawing on newspapers at the age of four and after attending school in Danbury and Colchester, she went on to study at the Colchester School of Art (1953-6) under the Headship of John O’Connor RWS (q.v.). She then worked for four years for the local prominent artist Charles Debenham (q.v.) as a graphic designer, both in publishing and advertising. She also worked in adult education. In 1966 she married Nelson Blowers, an artist’s framer, had three children and moved a few miles from Colchester where she still lives.

Dione Page’s first pictures were of the Welsh valleys where she spent many happy family holidays. These paintings of mountains and waterfalls had a bold quality, with water gushing out of bare rocks and Welsh chapels and cottages painted in a severe manner.

Later she found local inspiration in the East Anglian landscape and created outdoor scenes filled with fishing boats stranded in the mud of Mersea or Harwich and country houses with picturesque gardens. She also created still life images of succulent fruits, blossoming flowers and ready-to-eat shellfish. Her chosen subjects are intensified by her favorite medium: a mix of gouache, wax pastel and lumigraph pencil. This unique combination was developed and perfected from her earlier days as a graphic designer. Her main artistic influences have been Mary Fedden and Edward Bawden. Gardening, sailing and travelling have greatly influenced her choice of subject matters.

Dione Page was elected Associate Member of the Royal West of England Academy (RWA) in 1990 and has been a member of Colchester Art Society since 1954. She has been on its selection committee for many years. She had many solo and group exhibitions in galleries, in London, Wales and the rest of Britain and still exhibits locally.  She received RWA awards in 1986, 1987 and 1988.


The Broken Barge shows the bold, dynamic power of Dione Page’s drawing. She loves mixing together still lifes with landscapes, seascapes or skyscapes, the whole composition being filled with detailed elements as is the case here. Her compositions are intensely atmospheric and intriguing. Her time as a graphic designer still influences her work in her use of mixed media.

Selected Exhibitions


1961, 1962, 1963, Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibitions

The Mall Galleries

The Royal Institute Galleries

The Society of Women Artists


1975, 1983 The Minories, Colchester

1992 Chappel Galleries, Chappel

Chelmsford Museum

Hayletts Gallery, Maldon

The Studio, Coggeshall

Suffolk and Norfolk

The Aldeburgh Festival Exhibition Gallery

Gainsborough’s House, Sudbury

Gallery Q, Sudbury

The John Russell Gallery, Ipswich

Phoenix Gallery, Lavenham

The Little Gallery, Haylesworth

The Fermoy Gallery, Kings Lynn


Gallery 5 D, Chepstow, Wales

The Patricia Wells Gallery, Thornbury, Gloucestershire

Works in Private and Public Collections

Chelmsford Museum

Colchester Institute

Essex and Suffolk County Councils

School of Art and Design, Bristol

National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth

Royal London Insurance

South West Water, Bristol

The Minories, Colchester

The Nuffield Foundation, London

Also works abroad


BUCKMAN, David, Dictionary of artists in Britain since 1945, Art Dictionaries Ltd, Bristol, 1998, p. 937

THE ARTIST’S MAGAZINE, The Freedom of Mixed Media, November 2004

Chappel Galleries

Hayletts Gallery

Phoenix Gallery

The John Russell Gallery

The Royal West of England Academy