"Don Rico was born in Rochester, New York 1912, where, at the age of twelve. he received a scholarship to study at the Grand Central School of Art. Later, when his family moved to New York, he studied briefly at the Cooper Union; however, he gained most of his skills through self instruction.
In the '40s and '50s, Rico worked as an illustrator for numerous comics, including The Claw and Captain America, and eventually held a high position at Martin Goodman's Timely Comics, now known as Marvel Comics.
When he was sixteen years old, Rico worked with and studied woodengraving under H.J Glintenkamp. He was also part of the Federal Arts Project of the Works Progress Administration. He created a number of woodengravings under the supervision of Lynd Ward..
Many of his works of that period are now in the permanent collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Artwork by Rico can also be found in the Seattle Museum of Art, the New York Public Library Print Collection, the Library of Congress, the Delgado Museum of New Orleans, as well as numerous private collections.
Don Rico lived in Los Angeles since 1958. While in Los Angeles, he continued his work in wood, including a woodengraving to illustrate John Updike's poem ""Small City People"", in 1982. He created illustrations for motion picture and TV productions and taught art at U.C.L.A. and California State University at Northridge.
At the time of his death he was working on a book, The Wood Engravings of Don Rico, and preparing illustrations for a special edition of The Song of Songs."