Gérard Schneider was born on April 28, 1896, in Sainte-Croix, Switzerland.
He spent his childhood in Neuchâtel, where his father worked as an antique dealer.
Schneider, together with Hans Hartung and Pierre Soulages, was a pioneer of Lyric Abstraction, which echoed Abstract Expressionism in the United States.
He moved to Paris at the age of 20 to study at the École des Arts Décoratifs, and in 1918 he entered the École des Beaux-Arts at the studio of Fernand Cormon, whose students included Vincent van Gogh, Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec and Émile Bernard. He began exhibiting his work publicly from 1926 onwards, being invited to participate in the Venice Biennale in 1948, the year he obtained French nationality, and exhibited there again in 1954 and 1966.
In 1955, Gérard Schneider signed an exclusive contract with the New York gallery owner Samuel Kootz, a key figure in the promotion of Abstract Expressionism in the United States. Today, Schneider is considered a major figure in twentieth-century painting. Among the many prestigious institutional collections in which he is represented, we highlight those of the Museums of Modern Art in Brussels, Paris, New York, Milan, Rome, Rio de Janeiro, the Phillips Collection in Washington, the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis and the Zurich Kunsthaus.