Each year on Easter Sunday, Diane would visit the First Presbyterian Church in Brenham, Texas with her grandparents. The church, built in the late 1800s, was simple and unsophisticated in its whitewashed clapboard siding and aged-oak pews, reminiscent of its early German heritage. In all its simplicity however, the church was always filled with a complex, heavenly light from the antique stained glass leaded windows. This childhood experience created a passion for manipulated light in glass that continues to influence her life's work today.
Diane took up stained glass and oil painting as a hobby during college in Texas. She continued working as a hobbyist until her retirement from city planning in 2007. In 2008, she decided to become a glass artist professionally and established Aspen Light Glass Studio, while expanding her work to include kiln-formed glass. In 2013, Ms. Quarles opened her first glass studio in Ridgway, Colorado and recently relocated to a larger studio in Rico Colorado where she now masters in glass frit, dimensional glass and powdered glass palette knife paintings exclusively.
Diane Quarles' work can be found in galleries throughout the US. She has won several awards in glass, including first place in the blown/rolled glass category in the national Delphi Art Glass Festival (2011), work chosen in a regional fine art competition for permanent exhibition in Valley View Cancer Center (2012), selected "Best in Glass" at the Ridgway Rendezvous (2012) and placed second in the Delphi Art Glass Festival in the kiln-formed category (2015) and received honorable mention in glass as part of the North American Niche Awards (2017).