Born in Deensen, Germany in 1942, von Rydingsvard and her siblings grew up during the Nazi occupation of Poland and the trauma of World War II. Following the war, her family lived in eight different German refugee camps for displaced Poles. In 1959, by means of the U.S. Marshall Plan and the support of Catholic agencies, the von Rydingsvard family immigrated to Plainville, Connecticut. In 1965, von Rydingsvard graduated from the University of Miami, Coral Globes, receiving both her B.A. and M.A. from that institution. She later received an M.F.A. from Columbia University in 1975 as well as an honorary doctorate from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 1991. Von Rydingsvard is represented by Galerie Lelong & Co. in New York City.
Von Rydingsvard has received many awards, including the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship (1983); National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship (1979, 1986); Academy Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters (1994); Joan Mitchell Painters & Sculptors Grant (1997); and exhibition prizes from the International Association of Art Critics (1992, 2000). Major exhibitions include Madison Square Park, New York (2006); Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase College, State University of New York (2002); and Storm King Art Center (1992). Her work is represented in the permanent collections of over 30 museums, including The Metropolitan Museum of Art; The Museum of Modern Art; Whitney Museum of American Art; Walker Art Center; and The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art.
Von Rydingsvard lives and works in New York.
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