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"Ona"Ursula von Rydingsvard
Filmed in August 2013, Ursula von Rydingsvard discusses her large-scale sculpture Ona (2013), which is permanently installed outside of Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Originally made with cut cedar beams, the sculpture was cast in bronze at the Polich Tallix Fine Art Foundry, where von Rydingsvard is shown applying a patina to its undulating surface.
By installing the work in a public space without security guards or barricades, von Rydingsvard is encouraging visitors to touch the work, to “see with one’s hands.”More information and credits
Producer: Ian Forster. Consulting Producers: Wesley Miller & Nick Ravich. Interview: Ian Forster. Camera: Ian Forster, Rafael Salazar & Ava Wiland. Sound: Amanda Long & Ava Wiland. Editor: Morgan Riles. Artwork Courtesy: Ursula von Rydingsvard & Barclays Center. Special Thanks: Polich Tallix Fine Art Foundry. Theme Music: Peter Foley.
Art21 Exclusive is supported, in part, by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council; 21c Museum Hotel, and by individual contributors.
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Ursula von Rydingsvard’s massive sculptures reveal the trace of the human hand and resemble wooden bowls, tools, and walls that seem to echo the artist’s family heritage in pre-industrial Poland before World War II. She builds towering cedar structures, creating an intricate network of individual beams and sensuous, puzzle-like surfaces. While abstract at its core, von Rydingsvard’s work takes visual cues from the landscape, the human body, and utilitarian objects—such as the artist’s collection of household vessels—and demonstrates an interest in the point where the man-made meets nature.
“‘Ona’ in Polish refers to ‘her’ or ‘she’, and I thought that there’s something about that sculpture that has some hint of a female feel.”
Ursula von Rydingsvard