Ernst Schneider






Born in Switzerland 1955. Emigrated to Perth, WA, 1990, with Barbara. With my education and teaching experience both in Switzerland (Realschule) and Materials Design & Technology at several private Secondary Schools here in Perth I bring a meticulous and thorough approach to creative woodwork, furniture design and joinery. Since arriving in Perth I have been designing and making many pieces of furniture for our family home. I try to achieve the highest quality possible at every level, in what is visible and what is hidden, and to create unique pieces that can be handed down for generations. A well designed and manufactured piece radiates the love that was put into it. The wood, grain, direction of grain and colour combinations are what make the piece unique and memorable. An important factor is also to keep in mind the environment the piece is destined for, and incorporate complementary features where possible. A beautiful piece is generally simple and has nothing left which could be taken away. From 1995 until 2003 I have combined these developed skills in craftsmanship with my own artistic influence to create one-off picture frames on commission, extending and incorporating the artist’s work/style/motive onto custom made picture frames. At the same time I have learned the Bowen Technique, an Australian natural remedial therapy that resets the body to heal itself. This was so fascinating that I became an instructor of this modality in 2004 in order to introduce Bowen to Switzerland. Between 2004 and 2010 Bowen training has been my mission. Between 2010 until April 2022 I was back to full-time teaching Design & Technology. Now I am retired. During my last Bowen trip to Switzerland in May 2010 my friend Paul Steiner, a surveyor and chainsaw sculptor himself, convinced me to try my own creative artwork – self-taught chainsaw carving / sculpting – which I did, and this has guided me in my most creative phase to date. Wood, the medium I spent most of my professional life with has become a medium for Art. I sculpt and also teach students “Turning wood into Art” at my school. Art is about life, and particularly visual arts, whether landscape or figurative or abstract, are about life. Wood art has an added feature; it is made from a life form. The artist's medium is a living thing. Wood sculpture is an artist's interpretation of life, but it is also a tribute to the tree and its former life. Trees are ubiquitous. They provide protection and material for much of our modern life but, more than all that, trees are silent witnesses to the events that occur around them. They live for fifty to one hundred years or more and keep a record of all that happens. They are books with a history of their times. Stories hidden deep in the body of the tree are revealed to the artist and have a powerful influence on the art that is produced. With wood sculpture, a passion grips the artist in a final dance with the tree or parts thereof as it is reborn. Often, memories of its former life are evident, and add excitement to the new form. I like to think of my role as a collaboration with a greater artist, namely Mother Nature. In this collaboration, I try to combine the beauty that is inherent in the wood with my own artistic statement and to honour the former life of the tree. I tell the tree's story along with my own and, hopefully, give a second life to the tree and keeping the cycle of birth, death and rebirth alive. 


my sculptures

  • are explorations of form, texture and proportion

  • move the boundaries of reality

  • are intuitive expressions of distorted surreal beings

  • are full of simple beauty or contain a touch of quirkiness

  • mostly convey the synthesis between the figurative and the abstract, and the real and imaginary


my inspiration

  • sculpting is an amazing outlet for creative and artistic energy; it recharges me and balances me as a person

  • natural materials, their honesty and the effects that time and use have on them

  • a passion for wood to create a body of work that is environmental in pith and unique

  • imaginatively visualising collected materials and structures of nature and redirect their life stories

  • working in small series, each expressing an idea or concept

  • the challenge of using rough tools self-taught (such as chainsaw, carbatec woodcarver, angle grinder, power file, wire brush) to create delicate artwork with contrasting textures

  • finding and taking time to make each piece exact

  • wabi-sabi (the Japanese concept of ‘wisdom and beauty of imperfection’) which nurtures all that is authentic by acknowledging three simple realities: nothing lasts, nothing is finished, and nothing is perfect

  • sculptors like Paul Steiner, Alberto Giacometti, Peter Adams, Willy Verginer, Fernando Botero, Nikki de Saint Phalle, Antony Gormley


my art

  • a subconscious manifestation of the things that inspire me

  • evolving and based on experiences up to this point

  • a visual talking point for the viewer with no boundaries for personal and creative interpretations

  • a source of pleasure and enjoyment not only for the creator but also for the viewer and new owner

  • aims at creating unforgettable works and imparting a deep emotional connection between objects and human beings whenever I begin a new piece

  • all pieces are dated and signed; a registry is kept of where all my work goes

  • remember: wood is a living medium. It “works”, expands or shrinks depending on humidity and temperature. For this reason occurring cracks and colour changes are unavoidable natural processes (and therefore no reason for complaints). Avoid locating the sculptures in places that are too dry!





Furniture making

Picture framing


2010 - present
2010 - present
artist curriculum vitae

solo exhibitions

  • 2022 Open Home Gallery Exhibition, Hillarys WA

  • 2020 "TWENTY",  Westralia Square Building, Perth WA                                                                                                                       

duo exhibition

  • 2017 "Life - Stages and Crossroads" with Carmel Sayer, Ellenbrook Gallery, Ellenbrook WA                             

group exhibitions

  • 2022 WIZO's TIKVAH (Hope) Exhibition (Charity event supporting 190 Ukrainian children in Israel), Mossenson Gallery, Subiaco WA

  • 2022 Army Art Exhibition (Charity event supporting programmes/projects for members of the Australian Defence community), Leeuwin Barracks, Fremantle WA

  • 2022 WASA Annual Exhibition, Italian Club, Fremantle WA

  • 2021 "Mindscapes" annual CASM exhibition (Contemporary Australian Surrealists Movement), Moores Building Contemporary Art Gallery,  Fremantle WA

  • 2019 "Mindscapes" annual CASM exhibition (Contemporary Australian Surrealists Movement), Gomboc Gallery and Sculpture Park, Middle Swan WA,

  • 2018 "Showcase" as guest sculptor artist, Mater Dei College, Edgewater WA,

  • 2018 "Mindscapes" annual CASM exhibition (Contemporary Australian Surrealists Movement), Moores Building Contemporary Art Gallery,  Fremantle WA

  • 2018 "ART&DESIGN EXPO 2018" with guest artists Hayley Welsh & Ernst Schneider, International School of  Western Australia, City Beach WA

  • 2017 "Mindscapes" annual CASM exhibition (Contemporary Australian Surrealists Movement), Cambridge Studio Gallery,  Melbourne VIC

  • 2017 "Showcase" with guest artist Andy Quilty , Mater Dei College, Edgewater WA, guest sculptor artist

  • 2016 "Unrestricted By Reality" annual CASM exhibition (Contemporary Australian Surrealists Movement), Kidogo         Art House, Fremantle WA

  • 2016 "Showcase" with guest artist Lori Pensini, Mater Dei College, Edgewater WA, guest sculptor artist

  • 2015 "The Universe Next Door" annual CASM exhibition (Contemporary Australian Surrealists Movement),                Metamorphosis Art Gallery, Willetton WA

  • 2015 "Showcase" with guest artists CASM , Mater Dei College, Edgewater WA, as sculptor of CASM

  • 2014 "Surrealism Now" annual CASM exhibition (Contemporary Australian Surrealists Movement),                           Metamorphosis Art Gallery, Willetton WA

  • 2014 "Showcase" with guest artist Yvonne Zago, Mater Dei College, Edgewater WA, guest sculptor artist

  • 2013 "Showcase" , Mater Dei College, Edgewater WA, guest sculptor artist

  • 2012 "Showcase" , Mater Dei College, Edgewater WA, guest sculptor artist

  • 2011 "Showcase" , Mater Dei College, Edgewater WA, guest sculptor artist

alternative exhibiting places

  • 2022 'Out of the Woods' Exhibition (Fine Woodwork Association), Cannington Showgrounds, Cannington WA

  • 2022 13. Regiment Family Day (Army Art Show), Karrakatta WA

  • 2022 Willetton Rotary Artisan Market, Willetton WA

  • 2021 (online gallery)

  • 2021 Four Totems at Ngalangangpum School, Warmun WA

  • 2019 The WILD EYED Press Gallery, Nannup WA

  • 2018 The WILD EYED Press Gallery, Nannup WA

  • 2017 Camerich Furniture & Interior Design, Claremont WA

  • 2014 Metamorphosis Studio Gallery, Willetton WA

  • 2014 Artspace Gallery/Studio, Nedlands WA



  • 2022 WASA Member of the month June

  • 2021 Finalist City of Melville Art Awards, Ardross WA

  • 2017 Wanneroo Show, Wanneroo WA, First Prize in Sculptures

  • 2017 Finalist Emerging Artist Award Exhibition, South-Perth Community Hall , South-Perth WA

  • 2016 York Art & Craft Awards, York WA, Highly Commended for Works in Sculpture

  • 2015 York Art & Craft Awards, York WA, First prize for Works in Sculpture, as well as Highly Commended for Works        in Sculpture

  • 2015 Canning Art Awards, Canning WA, Second prize in 3D Works

  • 2015 Ellenbrook Open Art Awards, Ellenbrook WA, Highly Commended in Prime Projects Award for Mixed Media

  • 2014 Wongan Bienniale Exhibition of Art & Craft, Wongan Hills WA, First prize Award for Excellence in Art, as well        as Highly Commended Award in Art

work experience






artistic career

  • Since 2022          Member of WASA (West Australian Society of Arts) 

  • 2010 - present     Chainsaw artist and sculptor       

  • 2021 (June)         Artist in Residence (3 weeks) at Ngalangangpum School, Warmun WA

  • 2014 - 2022        Member of CASM (Contemporary Australian Surrealists Movement,        


teaching career

  • 2009 - 2022         Design & Technology teacher at Mater Dei College (now retired)


  • 2004 - 2010        Bowtech Instructor (Bowtech - The Original Bowen Technique)


  • 2000 - 2005        Design & Technology teacher at St. Mark's Anglican Community School


  • 1992 - 1999        Design & Technology teacher at Wesley College


  • 1991                 Design & Technology teacher at New Norcia Catholic College (WA)


  • 1975 - 1990        Realschul teacher, Kt St Gall (Switzerland)



  • Cert. II in Visual Arts Furniture in WA (2014)


  • Bowtech training 1998-2010 (Instructor/2004,Diploma/2008)                                                                                                       

  • Cert. IV in Training and Assessment in WA (2005)


  • Teachers training in Switzerland (Primary and Secondary School Diplomas 1975,1978)