What is the ruling regarding building a snowman? Will it count as building a sculpture / statue?
According to leading Hanafi scholars making a snowman is permitted, due to the fact that the sacred law allows images and forms in the context of play and fun as they are not being venerated. Imam al-Ayni commented on the hadith narrated by al-Bukhari mentioning Sayidah Ayesha used to play with dolls:
وَاسْتدلَّ بِهَذَا الحَدِيث على جَوَاز اتِّخَاذ صور اللّعب من أجل لعب الْبَنَات بِهن، وَخص ذَلِك من عُمُوم النَّهْي عَن اتِّخَاذ الصُّور
(عمدة القاري شرح صحيح البخاري)
“The hadith is evidence for the fact that it is permitted for girls to use (animate) forms (dolls) as toys, and this is an exception to the general prohibition upon (animate) forms.”Imam al-Ayni, Umdatul Qari
The other thing to bear in mind is that a snowman is not a permanent form therefore does not have the same meaning as a statue.
Answer approved by Shaykh Mazin Bakeer.