Ursula von Rydingsvard is a New York based contemporary artist whose work encompasses sculpture and two-dimensional imagery. Born in 1942 in Deensen, Germany, she spent the first five years of her life in the depravation of Post-War Displaced-Persons camps throughout Germany, before emigrating to the United States in 1950. Along with her 6 siblings the family endured years of poverty, throughout which she nurtured a dream of one day becoming an artist. Though the traditions of her family and her up-bringing as a woman would disallow it. She entered a traditional marriage and resigned herself to becoming a house-wife and home-maker. But, as fate would have it, the marriage dissolved with the husband's severe psychotic breakdown and she escaped, with her new born daughter, eventually to New York where she was finally able to achieve her artistic dream.
Her work, rooted in the sculpting of raw cedar, (as wood was her strongest sense-memory from her years in the DP camps) has been exhibited in galleries, museums and public spaces throughout the world including MOMA (NY and San Francisco), and in Bronze (molded from the original cedar sculptures) at the Art Institute of Chicago, the Venice Biennale, Yorkshire Sculpture Park (England), Storm King (New York), and the Barclay Center (Brooklyn).
The film tells two stories. One follows a recent commission for Princeton University, a monumental, now copper, sculpture, which turns out to be the most complex and difficult commission of her career to date. The film follows the entire process of construction through installation. The other narrative is her story: her early struggles, passion and profound drive to become an artist. This story, told mostly through her voice and writings, is filled out by interviews with colleagues, family members and close friends.
The film, currently in post-production, will be released in 2019.
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