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Patron of the Arts

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Patron of the Arts: Ron Crider

By Joanne Spataro
Correspondent

For Ron Crider, collecting art is an investment in the senses. Since 1983, he has purchased African tribal art from sub-Saharan Africa, specifically masks and totem figures. Modern art came into his life in 1990, when he fell in love with geometric abstraction and abstract expressionism created between 1940 and 1960. Today, the former gallery owner and art educator loves walking through his home in Hickory to visit his art, which he calls “old friends.”

Love at first abstract: Crider attended high school in Europe, where he became smitten with the art of Picasso in Paris. “I was struck, back in those years, and have never stopped loving the world of abstract,” he said.

Bicoastal: The native North Carolinian spent 16 years on the West Coast, where he developed a taste for tribal art. He missed his home state and later moved to Charlotte. “Charlotte had really grown up and become a major city in the South,” he said.

Old friends: Crider encourages art collectors to buy only what they love. “There’s a physical human connection as well,” he said. “I understand their chaos or their own sense of order. That makes it so much more palatable when I have that additional information.”

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