Diana Laidlaw says she grew up in a family with strong, progressive and political views, an influence for Diana choosing to work in politics.
She started by assisting Federal and State ministers for 7 years before she was elected as a Liberal Party member of the Legislative Council to the Parliament of South Australia in 1982.
When her party won Government in 1993, Diana entered Cabinet and proceeded to be the first woman to hold 3 consecutive portfolios over 3 consecutive terms (and 3 Premiers) as Minister for Transport and Urban Planning, Arts and Status of Women.
Diana was Minister for the Status of Women in 1994 during the year of centenary celebrations for Women’s Suffrage in South Australia and helped launch a time capsule stored in a vault in Parliament House for women to open in another hundred years. It will be interesting to see what has changed then!
Representing the Arts as Minister must have ignited Diana’s passion for starting her own artwork with mosaics during this time. Since her 21 year political career finished Diana’s mosaics are really taking off and are highly sort after. Pictured here with her popular mosaic poles which she has exhibited widely throughout South Australia. Loving her artistic life now, Diana works on her mosaics as much as possible from a farm studio in the Barossa Valley.
On a personal level it was fabulous to have Diana Laidlaw launch my first exhibition ‘women@work’ in 2000 as she represented women and the arts!