Josefina Rydholm was the owner of the first atelier in Uddevalla with photography as its main focus.
Josefina Rydholm was the daughter of Anders Rydholm and his wife Kristina (Stina) Cajsa Rydholm, née Borsett. Her parents manufactured and repaired instruments, mirrors and umbrellas. The family had four children – two daughters and two sons. The sons were active as photographers, like Josefina Rydholm.
In July1860, one of the brothers, Svante Leonard Rydholm registered a firm that Josefina Rydholm took over in October the same year. Svante Leonard Rydholm had been active as a travelling photographer for several years and was probably the person who taught Josefina Rydholm the profession. Only a month or so after the atelier had opened, Svante Leonard Rydholm moved to Linköping where he worked as a photographer. The aim of the Uddevalla atelier was probably right from the beginning for Josefina Rydholm to run it as her own. Legislation giving unmarried women their majority and freedom of trade was only passed in 1864.
Two types of photograph have been preserved from Josefina Rydholm’s atelier: portraits of Uddevalla’s citizens and city views. The portraits mainly show the wealthier inhabitants of Uddevalla but even some workers can be seen. The city views are often taken from heights showing the city layout with streets, roofs and the hills around. The material is still used in productions featuring the city’s history.
Josefina Rydholm’s photography atelier in Uddevalla was the centre of her activities for a couple of decades, in 1860–1880. After she had retired, Maria Lundbäck, one of her employees, took over. Like several other women photographers, Maria Lundbäck had been taught the photography profession by Josefina Rydholm. Lundbäck looked after her former teacher’s business for three years, after which she started her own firm. Josefina Rydholm’s firm was later taken over by Louise Andersson who was probably also the pupil of her predecessor.
Josefina Rydholm died in 1880 and her remains rest in the family grave at the Northern Cemetery in Uddevalla.