I began making jewelry at age 15 when I apprenticed with the jeweler/silver smith C. Leslie Smith, in Allentown, PA from 1964 – 1967. He was a graduate of the Philadelphia College of Art who was taught by Olaf Skoogfors. I opened my own silver smithing shop in New Hope, PA in 1968. In 1975 I shifted to a wholesale jewelry business selling through craft galleries and juried craft shows. Since then I have had many solo and group gallery shows. My jewelry is in private collections and galleries all over the world and in the permanent collection of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. My pieces have been included in books such as 1000 Rings (Inspiring Adornments for the Hand) A Lark Jewelry Book; Art Jewelry Today (A Schiffer Book for Designers & Collectors) by Dona Z Meilach and magazine articles in ” Lapidary Journal”, “Jewelers Circular Keystone” and numerous other publications.
For the last 12 years my jewelry making has been mostly wedding bands, a jewelry expression that is meaningful to me. I like my customers. I enjoy their excitement and creating the ring for their wedding ritual.
Soon after I moved into the house where I presently live, I started experimenting with sculpture. There are several bluestone quarries nearby. While building a walkway and walls for a garden, I became intrigued with the stones I gathered and worked with. Then a series of serious illnesses stopped my work. During those years, while dreaming or sketching, I saw metaphorical shapes expressed in the stone. When I recovered I began by drilling through a stone to create a kind of portal. I pursued drilling and grinding the stone with diamond tools, teaching myself how to achieve what I had imagined. This idea slowly evolved as I opened and widened the drilled hole with diamond grinders, the tools naturally and organically created spiral shapes. I began gold leafing the carved surfaces so the inside of the stones appear golden. Some of the portals now have fabricated entryways made with copper. some are simply cleaved rocks with the exposed inside gold leafed.
The Snyderman-Works Gallery
303 Cherry Street
23 A East Market Street