The daughter of Annie Cata Reyna (Oke Owingeh) and Tony Reyna (Taos Pueblo), Diane Reyna grew up at Taos Pueblo. Although she didn’t study art formally, she learned about fine Native art through her father’s Tony Reyna Indian Shop. Besides selling quality Indian arts from Taos Pueblo and other tribes, the shop served as a gathering place for artists and craftpersons. This exposure helped develop Diane’s aesthetic sensibility and artist’s eye. Although involved in the arts, she pursued other paths. Diane studied pre-law at New Mexico State University, then completed her degree in University Studies at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque. With a focus on journalism, she worked for eleven years in television news as a videographer with KOAT-TV, the ABC affiliate in Albuquerque, and as a video documentary producer. Her video documentary experience cumulated with the production the Peabody award-winning “Surviving Columbus”. This landmark two-hour program documented the history of the Spanish and Anglo-American invasion of the Southwest as seen through the eyes of Pueblo people. The film debuted on Columbus Day, October 12, 1992 on PBS nationwide. The production was coproduced with production teams from KNME-TV in Albuquerque and the Institute of American Indian Arts.
In 1998 Diane was one of four recipients of the Dubin Fellowship. Awarded annually through the Indian Arts Research Center (IARC) at the School for Advanced Research (SAR), the artist-in-residence provides financial support as well as housing, studio space and materials to mature and emerging Native artists. Diane used her fellowship year to create a series of abstract work on paper using oil pastels and colored pencils. Known for her stone sculpture, Diane also creates works on paper. Her artwork draws from her Pueblo heritage and is inspired by energies in nature.
Currently Diane works as the Student Success Program Coordinator for the Student Success Center at the Institute of American Indian Arts in Santa Fe. She works closely with students providing academic, creative and cultural support designed to help them persist through college and life. One of the programs she implements at the Student Success Center is the spring and fall orientations. Diane trains student orientation leaders to assist new students with their transition to IAIA. She facilitates a weekly Talking Circle for students to talk about their college experience throughout the semester. At mid-terms and finals week, she prepares blue corn meal (atole) for students, staff and faculty. Diane utilizes her skills in experiential education and facilitation to support her teaching of college success skills courses at IAIA.