Sabina Ott was born in New York City in 1955. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in 1979 and a Master of Fine Arts degree in 1981, both from the San Francisco Art Institute in California. In 1986 she received the New Talent Award from the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and in 1989 she was given an Artist-in-Residence Grant from the Djerrasi Foundation. In 1990 she received an Individual Artist’s Grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Ott was a Visiting Artist at Humbolt State University and the San Francisco Art Institute in 1988. She was also a Visiting Artist at the Claremont College Graduate School in 1989. In 1993 she was an Assistant Professor at California State University. She also served on the Fine Arts Graduate Faculty at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, CA.