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George Frederick Snyder was born in 1951 in Charleston. Beginning college as a pre-law student at Marshall University, he graduated with full honors as an art major in 1973, and subsequently received a fellowship at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill. He received a Master of Fine Arts degree from UNC in 1976.  

Following his schooling he returned to Charleston and opened an exhibition space for artists, the Center for Contemporary Art, where he promoted the work of other artists while creating his own. His discipline and diligence earned the interest of serious collectors, and he soon made the decision to pursue his own art full-time.

Snyder’s acrylic paintings on canvas are often brightly colored, highly geometric compositions in which contrasting bands of color create an illusion that the hand-painted surface is vibrating. His precise lineation is achieved by applying tape to the canvas during the painting process, a painstaking process that can take many hours.

A recognized innovator in the use of acrylics, Snyder has reinvented his art throughout his career. A pile of cardboard tubes in a dumpster inspired him to wrap pieces of painted canvas around the tubular shapes. He refined and expanded that idea, eventually painting directly on polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pipes, using auto paints and employing airbrush techniques. His work continued to develop and change as he combined the painted tubes in sculptural shapes.

Although they are easily recognizable as his creations, Snyder’s works are unsigned. “Signatures distract and ruin a piece,” he has said. “I vowed that anyone would know it was mine just by looking, and then I worked hard to develop that distinction.”

Works by Snyder hang in the headquarters of several large corporations, as well as in the private collections of Peter Nero, Andre Agassi, Jack Palance and Dennis Rodman. He has had more than 50 solo exhibitions through the U.S., and his paintings are in the permanent collections of several American museums. Snyder’s pioneering painting techniques are featured in Acrylics Bold and New by Nicholas Roukes, published by Watson-Guptill Publications. 

Snyder lives in Indialantic, Florida with his wife Jennifer.

This Article was written by Colleen Anderson

Last Revised on April 01, 2020


Cite This Article

Anderson, Colleen "George Snyder." e-WV: The West Virginia Encyclopedia. 01 April 2020. Web. 11 August 2020.

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