Monica Sjöö (1938-2005) was born in Northern Sweden and, after spending some years in Paris, moved to the UK where she divided her time between Bristol and Wales. As well as an artist, Sjöö was also a keen writer, activist, feminist and anarchist.
She was fascinated by the old goddess religions, and images related to this research frequently figure in her paintings. Her painting God Giving Birth has become something of an icon in the feminist art movement. Depicting God as a powerful woman in the process of giving birth, it caused outrage when it was first exhibited in St Ives in 1970.