Professional Artist, Assistant Professor at Walsh University Wins Coveted Award

Walsh University is proud to announce that Diane Belfiglio, Professional Assistant Professor of Art and Studio Coordinator, is the recipient of the 2023 Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award in the visual arts two-dimensional category.  She is the only Stark County artist to receive an award this year.

More than 600 applications from seven categories were submitted to the Ohio Arts Council, a state agency that funds and supports quality art experiences to advance the larger creative community. Belfiglio rose to the top of the applications as one of 75 Ohio artists and one of 33 painters awarded $5,000 each. For this award, artists may only submit work created within the past three years.  Her application featured 12 of her most recent watercolor paintings created between 2020 and 2022.

Individual Excellence Awards recognize artists’ bodies of work that exemplify specific disciplines. These awards support artists’ growth and development while recognizing their work in Ohio and their cultural influence beyond the state. Funding recommendations are made through an anonymous, open panel review process staffed by art professionals and focused on the exceptional merit of artists’ past work. The award also demonstrates that you can build a career in the arts right here in Ohio.

“Receiving this coveted award is quite an honor,” said Belfiglio, who received the award once before in 1981. “When I won this award one year after graduate school, it really launched my career. More importantly, it kept me in contact with the Ohio Arts Council and the other programming they offer for Ohio artists, which I have participated in over many years. We are so fortunate to have such a vibrant and active arts council in Ohio.”

In addition to her own body of work, Belfiglio has created numerous community art projects and large-scale mosaic installations at Walsh University and with other local community partners. Her work can be found in permanent and private art collections in Ohio and across the nation. Currently, she has a solo show at the Zanesville Museum of Art in the Linn Auditorium through August 12.  Her work has also recently been accepted into two prestigious juried shows: the Ohio Artist Registry 2023 Juried Exhibition, sponsored through the Ohio Arts Council and the Columbus Metropolitan Library, is on display until March 25, and the 19th Annual Bryn Du Art Show in Granville opens March 3 and runs through March 25. Belfiglio's work can be found on her website: