RIP Diane Butler

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We are saddened to hear from the Free Venice Beachhead that Venice artist Diane Butler died today at St. John’s after being admitted for an intracranial injury. Butler was 59 years old and is survived by her husband Ibrahim and daughter Lani. As of 3pm her friends are beginning to gather on Ocean Front Walk at Dudley, where Diane and Ibrahim sold art together for over 25 years.

Photo by Monica Almeida for the New York Times.

Butler grew up in Bel Air and started “hanging out” in Venice at the age of eighteen in 1970. She started selling her paintings on Ocean Front Walk after taking art classes at Santa Monica College. It was on Ocean Front Walk that she met Ibrahim.

Butler will be remembered for her art, her support of homeless and vehicle dweller rights, participation in the Venice Beach Drum Orchestra and publication of the Spirit of Venice website.

Update from Jim Smith at the Free Venice Beachhead: “It was a brain aneurysm. Diane was walking her dogs when she felt it. She told a passerby that she was having a seizure. He called the paramedics who took her to St. John’s Hospital.”

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