It’s a perpetual debate. Is art supposed to be about the artist or about the viewers?
Purists remain that an art should always be about what the artist wants to say. The minute an artist starts considering others in any shape or form, that’s selling out. Then there is the other side, those who believe that anyone who wants to send a message must consider how it can be said in a way that will be understood by the viewers.
Then There’s Synder
Then there’s Snyder, a conceptual artist, whose art is grounded on the actual interaction of people with his work. The entire world is his gallery and any given space could be his canvass. As such, viewers become an inherent part of his creation because his art is not just the image he creates or the messages he put across. His art is the culture that develops through the relationship that people cultivate with his images.
The Materials He Uses
Snyder uses the “natural” environment to create his art. He examines how the weather, the lighting, the trees, the wires, the signs, and other materials located in the venue where he wants to install his art could affect his image. He starts by scouting the area before doing the images indoors. To make it as much part of the environment as possible, he cuts it out to the shape of the image before pasting it on his canvass.
His first exhibit was in Australia. There were no opening nights, no wines, no sales, and no invitations for a gala night. His art was for everyone to see, for free. It’s on café walls, on the portable restroom door, on a plant box, on a giant water tower, and on all sorts of walls.
Not many noticed his art especially the ones installed on heavily painted walls but, every so often, someone stops to look, think, and takes a picture.
That’s all Snyder hoped for. All he wanted was for a few to connect with his message, with his image, and with his materials. That moment when the viewer relates, in any level, with his material, that’s his art.
Others may call him an urban artist, others may call him a 3D graffiti artist, others may call him a mural painter. I couldn’t care any less. The label should not matter. It never mattered.
What matters is the art, the vision he dares to dream about and the guts to go out and make it happen.