A native of the Pacific Northwest, Schneider spent his childhood collecting and creating.  Later, as a student at  
 Gonzaga University in Spokane, WA., he spent a year studying in Florence, Italy, drawing inspiration from early
 Christian art, the Greek Riace bronzes, the Renaissance and its integration of art into architecture, as well as
 the works of Fra Angelico, Simoni Martini, Rafael, Brunelleschi, and Michelangelo.

  Acceptance into the Museum of Modern Art’s P.S. 1 National Studio Program brought him to New York City,
  where he remained for fifteen years.  While living in cramped studio spaces and working as an art handler and
  massage therapist, Schneider’s large scale assemblage pieces took hold.  

  His creations have received national and international recognition, appearing at the Trans Hudson Gallery and
  the P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center in New York; the Fundacio “la Caixa” in Barcelona, Spain; the Cleveland
  Center for Contemporary Art, Cleveland, OH; the Des Moines Art Center, Des Moines, IA; the Art Gallery of
  Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; the Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, CA; the Scottsdale Museum of
  Contemporary Art, Scottsdale, AZ; the Brooks Museum of Contemporary Art, Memphis, TN; and the Tacoma
  Art Museum, Tacoma, WA.
The Doll Cathedral
Building Model
First Load of Rebar
Cutting and Shaping Rebar
Welding Column Sections
Joining Column Sections
Making Adjustments
Attaching Dolls to Columns
Outdoor Weather Testing
Completed Scale Model
Send an Email.mailto:joseph@josephschneiderart.com?subject=Emailhttp://livepage.apple.com/shapeimage_1_link_0
Phase I
© Joseph Schneider
Phase I includes: the on-going process of securing financial support to help launch the largest-scaled project to date for Joseph Schneider; researching cathedral designs and incorporating elements from each into his own construction; building a complete small-scale model; overseeing the conversion of a horse barn into a finished studio with a floor strong enough to support portions of the steel rebar cathedral structure;  designing, welding, and testing column units for strength and support; testing dolls with various polyurethane coatings for outdoor durability.
Schneider is currently building The Doll Cathedral on the five acres he owns in rural Oregon.   His Creative Capital grant is helping to funding the project’s first phase: completing one-third of the cathedral and the launch of this documentary website.  With additional support from the Oregon Arts Commission, the building site will also serve as the work’s inaugural venue.  The end result – which Schneider believes will require about 10,000 Barbie, Ken, and G.I. Joe dolls – will reach about 60 feet in height at its tallest points, and run 53 feet long by 22 feet wide.  It will include the characteristic elements found in legendary cathedrals like Notre Dame in Paris, from flying buttresses to towers, rounded apse, and nave.  Yet the entire construction will be made to be easily disassembled and transported to other locations.
Schneider is collecting dolls for the project largely via donations.  Using electrical zip ties and clear fiberglass epoxy, he attaches the dolls to a framework made of welded steel bars.  He’s considering placing the dolls in neat layers so that they “resemble the stripes in Italian cathedrals, made of different colors of stone.”  
What’s more, he’s building his creation as medieval cathedral builders did – back to front, as funding allows.  Once the first phase is completed in mid-2010, Schneider plans to stage a performance at the unfinished Doll Cathedral.  “In medieval times, there was often an early celebration indicating the completion of the apse, which was usually the first part of a cathedral to be made,” he says.  The performance will most likely involve a candle-lit ceremony, reflecting the project’s elements, as well as its low-tech nature.  
For his edifice, Schneider chose a scale that maintains a sense of drama while also establishing intimacy.  He hopes that The Doll Cathedral will eventually find temporary homes at sculpture parks around the country even in its early, unfinished stages.  “I don’t want visitors to feel like they’re in a dollhouse, but instead in something elegant and grand,” he says.  “I imagine that viewers will pass through the cathedral’s columns like walking past tree trunks in the forest.”
A project of  Creative Capital  65 Bleecker Street 7th floor New York NY 10012   www.creative-capital.orghttp://www.creative-capital.orgshapeimage_2_link_0