Valerie Ganz was born in Swansea in 1936. She grew up in Mumbles, and attended the Swansea College of Art and it was at this institution that she would become a lecturer until 1973 when she left to concentrate on her painting full-time. Her interest lay in the industry and landscapes of South Wales and she spent many days and weeks underground at various coalmines capturing images of the miners at work. Although she is well known for her paintings of the colliers she also painted dancers, musicians, prisoners and oil rig workers to name a few. Valerie was a member of the Royal Cambrian Academy, and her work can be seen in various UK public collections. She died in September 2015 aged 79.