Valerie Ganz, Three Paintings from the “Shower” Series
Valerie Ganz was born in Swansea, South Wales, United Kingdom, overlooking the dramatic sweep of Swansea Bay with its background of heavy industry. She attended Swansea College of Art and studied painting, sculpture and stained glass. Ganz remained as a tutor until 1973 when she turned her attention to painting full time.
As Valerie Ganz’a interest in the landscape of South Wales grew, her attention was drawn to the landscape of its industrial areas and, in particular, to its mining industry. Over a period of many years, Ganz worked at fourteen different collieries, taking a house and studio in 1985 at Six Bells, Abertillery.
For a year Ganz worked at the Six Bells Colliery, alongside the miners both above ground and at the coalface. In the evening she made studies of the miners and their families at choir practice, in the snooker halls and in the chapel. This work formed the basis of the mining exhibition in 1986 at the Glynn Vivian Gallery in Swansea. The exhibition was entitled “Mining in Art”; her work was shown along with the works of fellow artists Josef Herman, Jack Crabtree and Nicholas Evans.