Goddess at Carnac, Bretagne by Monica Sjöö. Copyright: Family Estate, deposited at MAN - Anna Nordlander Museum. Skellefteå, Sweden.

The Monica Sjöö Curatorial Collective

Working collaboratively to recuperate and re-present, within a diverse range of understandings, the expanded practice of Monica Sjöö: artist, feminist activist, writer, scholar of Goddess cultures and eco feminist.

Aims

  • To advocate for Monica Sjöö’s position as an important feminist artist, writer  and activist.
  • To work in parallel with the Family Estate (which is engaged with exhibitions and holds copyright to all Sjöö’s art works and writings) in order to provide a context for, and draw a wider audience to, Monica Sjöö’s life and practice.
  • To reclaim her seminal place in Art History, feminist practice and the ecological movement.
  • To engage new, diverse and international audiences with her art and activism.
  • To re-evaluate and critique her work within different contexts and understandings, including a dynamic and creative contemporary context.
  • To work in dialogue with diverse curators and artists in finding resonance with past and contemporary art practitioners.

Objectives

  • To use audio, video and lens based media online to disseminate her art and ideas.
  • To hold interactive physical and virtual events exploring her ideas and writings.
  • To hold talks, discussions, debates and events in a variety of geographical contexts, engaging diverse audiences and critiques.
  • To collaborate with the environmental movement in the presentation of her political and campaign work.
  • To conduct an on-going collaboration with MAN – Museum Anna Nordlander, Skellefteå, Sweden.
  • To catalogue and cross reference archives held in personal and public access collections

Members

Jo Eliot, Co-ordinator and originator

Studied Theatre at Central School of Speech and Drama and later a Masters degree in Linguistics from Bristol University. Taught at Universities of the West of England and Bristol for many years. Former treasurer of Feminist Archive, Founder of Hay on Wye Festival of British Cinema, Trustee of various organisations. Lover of arts/film and literature. Active in women’s liberation movement (WLM) in Bristol at the same time as Monica Sjöö. Retired and living in Portugal which was where she met Monica’s surviving son Toivo and founded the Monica Sjöö Curatorial Collective.

Dr. Sue Tate

Freelance art historian, Research Fellow at the University of the West of England, Bristol (UWE) and Trustee of the Feminist Archive South (FAS). She has had a long career in lecturing on Visual Culture to art and design degree and post grad students. Her research and teaching interests have always been around women artists – their trials and tribulations, their achievements and the contribution they make to art history once returned to the narrative. Most recently she has worked on women Pop artists with Pauline Boty as her main case study curating a major exhibition and authoring “Pauline Boty: Pop Artist and Woman”. FAS holds an important archive of Monica Sjöö’s papers which stimulated Sue’s interest in joining the Collective.

Dr Su Fahy

Artist, Curator, Writer Co – Ordinator of BAW – Bath Arts Workshop History Group @bawhistory working on archive exhibitions and publications on the Counter Culture in 70s Bath. Working principally to commission, Fahy engages with theorists, photographers, and archive materials with a view to producing images for collaborative publication or exhibition. Recent projects have included Drawing on Dorset (Dorset Visual Arts, 2019-2020) a touring exhibition and publication. Introduced to the political activism and artist Monica Sjöö who exhibited and engaged with the Workshop in the 70s contributing to Blue Heaven at the Cleveland Hotel in Bath through her radical political banners and visionary paintings.

Rupert White, Writer

Medical doctor, writer, and editor of artcornwall.org. Author of the book ‘Monica Sjöö: Life and Letters’. Rupert White first became aware of Monica because of her involvement in the Earth Mysteries movement in the UK in the late 70’s, which came about following her encounter with Silbury Hill and Avebury. www.antennapublications.org.uk

Dr Amy Tobin

Lecturer in the History of Art and Curator at Kettle’s Yard, University of Cambridge. Her research, publications and exhibitions address gender, sexuality and race in histories of modern and contemporary art. Amy Tobin is currently working on a book on art, feminism and sisterhood in Britain and the United States in the 1970s. Amy Tobin encountered Monica Sjöö’s work as part of this research and am interested in the ways her art, her activism and her spiritual practice can reshape histories of art and feminism.

Matthew Hughes, Curator of Legion Projects

Legion Projects is an artist-led organisation and an open collaboration based in the UK. Our projects showcase artistic work and research through exhibitions, publications and events. A common thread throughout our projects is their exploration of what connects us to the surroundings in which we exist, how we impact the land and how it affects us. Originally founded in 2012, we now operate in a UK-wide context. We have commissioned and developed 40 artists projects across the country, including exhibitions, films, events, talks, publications and online projects. www.legionprojects.com

Mariana Vodovosoff, Swedish Liaison/Consultant

Project manager and Swedish Liaison. Works with culture, horticulture and communication in Stockholm, Sweden. Webmaster for the MSCC web page.