Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Chalkfest 2009

I participated in Chalkfest 2009 for the first time this year on Saturday, August 8th at Wilson Park (Eau Claire, WI). I didn't win anything; however, it was a great learning experience. I also know what to expect for next year and how to prepare for the event.

Conceptually, I wanted to take iconic images from different cult classic movies and collage them together. I was curious if people would recognize certain images when they were taken out of context (i.e. the film in which it appeared). Films such as Spaceballs, Clerks, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, Memento, etc... To view images of my chalk drawing, click on the following link:


The weather could have been better... The rain from the night/morning before caused the fountain at the park to flood (lots of standing water), there were scattered showers throughout the day, and the event concluded earlier than planned due to a tornado watch! Thus, artists lost about 2-3 hours of drawing time, which isn't anything compared to other artists whose work was completely washed away by the rain!! There were many talented artists who participated in Chalkfest. Volume One Magazine, who organized the event, had photographers taking pictures throughout the day. These images can be viewed on Volume One's website by going to the following webpages:


(Note: 'Chalkfest' image above is credited to Volume One Magazine)

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Experimental Medical Devices

These are photographs I took when we [my Drawing III class] went to the St. Paul Science Museum for a field trip. Enjoy!!

Prostate Gland Warmer, 1925 (left)
(click link or photo to see more images and information about this device)

Vibratory Chair, 1900 (center)
(click link or photo to see more images and information about this device)

Electreat, 1912 (right)
(click link or photo to see more images and information about this device)

Add Image

Oxydonor, 1896 (left)
(click link or photo to see more images and information about this device)

To view images of the Museum of Questionable Medical Devices along with other photos related to this topic, please click

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Popular Culture and National Culture

This is my final project for Drawing III (sorry about the poor image quality). My inspiration for this piece originated during a discussion in my 'women's studies' course, as we were discussing a topic related to the ailment of hysteria that afflicted women and the various "cures" associated with this disease.

The following is the short artist statement I wrote in relation to this piece:

Patriarchy is commonplace in the United States; it follows that our typical views concerning sexual intercourse are from the male gaze. Thus, men have defined the cultural standards, methods, and purposes of sex. My work is about gender reversal, specifically concerning the female orgasm. It is perfectly normal and healthy for a woman to be proud of her sexuality. The problem is breaking down the social stigma attached to sexual intercourse, which has hindered women from speaking about what is sexually pleasing to each one of them. Every single woman is built differently, so what arouses different women also varies. This piece is about encouraging all women to break their silence in the bedroom and teach men how to properly achieve the task at hand.

To view more images of "Orgasm Study One," click on any of the images to be directed to my flickr page, or click on the following link:


Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Walker Art Center Field Trip - Cherryless Spoon

The work I chose to write about is Claes Oldenburg's "Spoonbridge and Cherry" (1985-1988). It is constructed of aluminum, stainless steel, and paint and the dimensions are 354 x 618 x 162 in. Even though I have viewed this work in the past, I have never seen it without the cherry on the spoon. In discussion with a classmate about the sculpture, Kate made the comment that the 'absence' changes the work. I completely agreed with her observation. When we first approached "Spoonbridge and Cherry," we knew something was different; and then, we realized that the cherry was missing. When looking at the spoon, the viewer can see where the cherry had been previously because of the different color and surface treatment on the end of the spoon.

To see more images of the cherryless spoon, click on any of the images, or click on the following link: http://photobucket.com/steindlj_ClaesOldenburgCherrylessSpoon.

To read more about the history of Oldenburg's "Spoonbridge and Cherry," click on the following link (which will take you to the Walker Art Center's site): http://garden.walkerart.org/artwork.wac.

To read more about the cherry restoration process and how they (Walker Art Center) put the cherry back on the spoon, click on the following link (this will also take you to the Walker Art Center's site): http://blogs.walkerart.org/ecp/2009/05/01/cherry-back-on-spoon/.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Ornamentation Project - Finished

This is my finished 'Ornamentation' project for Drawing III. It was difficult to get a good photograph of the installation without a wide-angle lens, but did take pictures of it from different angles.

One thing I found interesting about this project as I collected materials was the common, reoccurring items that people forgot/left behind/lost/abandoned, such as phone chargers (hotels and vehicles), swimming suit halves (hotels and gyms), single gloves (hotels, gyms, and vehicles), hats (hotels, gyms, and vehicles), toys (hotels, gyms and vehicles), and various others. A few of the random items that were not as common include such items as a jock strap (gym), a net (vehicle), a pad of paper with a note written to the person's lover (vehicle), and others.

One thing worth mentioning that you really do not get from any of the images of this project is the smell. Lost and found items have a very distinct odor to them. During the class critique, this smell was equated with smelling "like Goodwill." However, there is a difference between buying things from Goodwill and acquiring things (via donation) from the 'lost and found.' People knowingly bring belongings to "Goodwill;" conversely, items in the 'lost & found' were unintentionally put there (i.e. these L & F items were not necessarily put here by choice).

I titled this piece "Everything but the Hooks and Thread." The only items I bought for this piece were the hooks (used to hang the items on the wall) and the thread (used to sew the various objects/things together). As discussed in the critique, the viewer may need more help understanding this installation. Thus, I am open to possible suggestions for a different title that may help steer the mind in the correct direction.

I do have many more images of the finished installation available on my photobucket page. To view more images, click on either of the images above, or click on the following link: http://photobucket.com/steindlj_finishedornamentationproject.

(Note: Ideally, I would have liked to cover the entire space with 'lost and found' items; but time didn't allow it.)

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Ornamentation, Abandonment, and Lost & Found

Contemplating abandonment, questioning what it means for something to be abandoned, I saw it as something that was once used, cared about, and then, left behind. What else shares this fate? Lost and Found items.

[Materials] I began calling local businesses, specifically hotels and gyms, asking if their company would be able to donate any items to me for my project. All businesses, by law, have a waiting period of approximately 90-days/three months that they must hold onto items that have been lost, before they donate them to charity. Due to such stipulations, finding and gathering materials for this project was difficult (especially becasue it had to be done in about a 1-2 week time period). Luckily, some area businesses did donate items and I was finally able to get this project underway.

[Location] In the UW-Stout Applied Arts building, on the 3rd floor, a small room is designated as the 'student lounge.' When considering what a typical lounge environment would include, I think of an area where one can go to wind-down, relax, eat, talk with friends, etc...; and area that would include a fridge, microwave, television, radio, etc... - basically an area comparable, to some extent, with a "teachers' lounge" and/or "breakroom." In the past, the student lounge had furniture (couches); they have been removed. There isn't (and has never has been) a fridge, microwave, television, radio, or any of these accomodations. The 'student lounge' is a small room that has been pushed aside, stripped down to a few tables with chairs, a rug and a lamp. The room, in my opinion, is used by students few and far between because it lacks the 'lounge environment.' The student lounge is lost by the majority and is found by very few; it has been abandoned by large majority of the student body and many don't even know it exists. The 'student lounge,' was the location that best coincided with the concept of this project.

The 'student lounge' is shown in the images above. To view more pictures of the student lounge, click on any of the images or click on the following link: http://photobucket.com/studentloungebeforeinstallation.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Ornamentation and an artist

Ornamentation is the subject of our next project. When I first started to think about ornamentation, I was drawn to textiles - specifically the patterns and decorations of the 1960s and 1970s. As I was searching through different fabric swatches, I remembered an image I had seen of a gas station covered in fabric. The gas station I am referring to was the work of Jennifer Brooke Marsh (along with a collaborative effort of many other artists).

"Artist Jennifer Marsh covered a 50-year-old former Citgo station with a giant blanket. Jennifer was sick of paying high gas prices and bothered by the abandoned gas station that was an eyesore on the drive to her studio each day, so she decided to do something about it."

[To view more images of the gas station project, click on any of the three images above or click on the following link: http://photobucket.com/referenceimagesofmarshs_gasstationproject.]

This served as a starting point for my investigation...

Finished Science and Nature Project

The following images are of my finished 'Science and Nature Project,' which was photographed in the photography studio located in Millenium Hall (UW-Stout).

Overall, I am happy with the finished 'drawing.' The finished project measures [approximately] 5' wide (from the two furthest points of the fallopian tubes) x [approx.] 3' high x a foot and a half to 2' [where the base (vagina) extends outward]; in addition, it has approximately 10-12 lbs. of wax covered over the surface area, with the majority of the weight from the wax located on the base (vagina/battlefield). I haven't calculated the exact number of army men used throughout the composition, but I assure you, it was a lot!!

I do wish more time would have been allocated to complete this project because of the technical/structural issues I encountered. Ideally, I would have preferred to use wood, rather than foam core, to stabilize the drawing, wax, army men, etc... The foam core, as suspected, didn't withstand the weight of the wax too readily. Complications especially arose during transportation. The problems primarily occurred where the base connects and forms a 90 degree angle (in the 'vaginal/battlefield' region).

If you would like to see more photographs of this project, please see my photobucket account, which is where the images have been downloaded. You may click on either of the images above or click on the following link:

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Science and Nature Project - Process images

The following images and links provided are intended to give an idea of my process for the Science and Nature Project.  

First, I did an under-drawing of the female reproductive system. It was a pain in the a$$ because of the scale.  I ended up having to use 4 different sheets of paper (i.e. the 22" x 30" artist-quality paper).  To the right are images of the pencil underdrawing(s).

The first underdrawing pic is of the central area (i.e. the uterus, cervix, the 'branches' to the ovaries, the start of the fallopian tubes) and it also shows a few of the reference images I was looking at for this project.  The second image also shows the central area with the addition of a one-dollar bill placed next to the image to give a sense of scale of/to the drawing.  (Note: The dollar is not part of the composition.)

As I went along, I did more experiments with the materials I would be using on this project.  As you may have seen in one of my earlier blog posts, in which, I placed images of two of my pastel/wax on paper drawing experiments; these earlier studies were done on sketchbook paper and were not attached to foam core.  However, the images on the left consist of pastel on [artist-quality] paper which was attached to foam core using 3-M spray adhesive.  The drawing was set with a [pastel] spray fixative, I then used wax to hold the army men in place.  

On the left is an image of some of the egg experiments I did for this project.  Each egg has a gold-colored ball inside of it.  The balls were made using Sculpey clay; then, after the balls were baked, each was painted with (one of two shades of gold-colored) 'Liquitex Glossies' acrylic paint(s).  The egg on the left looks 'foggy' because a different technique was used on it, than the other two (to the right).  My 'normal process' consisted of (1)pouring wax into each 1/2 of an egg mold, (2)placing the ball in one of the sides, and (3)connecting the two sides of the mold together to create the egg.  For the egg on the left, rather than using my 'normal process,' I tried painting in between layers of wax.  I didn't use this technique for my project, but it was still worth the learning experience.  

To the right is my project drawn in pastel, before the vagina was added to the composition.  At this point in the process, the drawing has already been attached to foam core (using 3M spray adhesive).  [Note...I had started to cut it out prior to taking a process pic, which is why there are small gaps in some of the areas.  Also, the blue (painter's) tape was used to connect (hold) the sheets of paper together while I was drawing the image and while I spray-mounted it to the foam core.]  

This last image, on the right, shows the final stage of the drawing process and the beginning stage(s) of applying wax to the piece (as seen on the left ovary and fallopian tube in the image).  The entire drawing has been attached to foam core and, also, has been cut-out (i.e. the white paper behind the image is for background purposes only, and is not part of the piece.)  (Note...The bucket, also, is not part of the composition; it was used to temporarily stabilize the piece while I photographed it because it was a little 'top-heavy' prior to adding the wax and army men.) 

If you'd like to see more of my process images, I have posted the vast majority of them on my photobucket account.  To access/view these images, click on any of the images above, or follow this link:  http://photobucket.com/jensstudioart_scienceandnatureprocessimages

Some of these photos may also be viewed on my flickr account.  To access/view my flickr page, click on the following link:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/jensteindl/

Note: If you're viewing images on my flickr page, see the 'sets' entitled (1) "pencil underdrawings," (2) "Egg Experiments," and (3) "Pastel Drawings."

Thursday, February 19, 2009

UWEC Drawing Exhibit

Tuesday, February 17 our Drawing III class took a field trip to the Foster Gallery at UWEC to see the drawing exhibit.  The title of the show was appropriately entitled "Drawing Beyond the Edges."  The class was instructed to pick three of the works of art displayed and to take notes on the observations we make about each piece (also instructed to spend 1/2 hr. in front of each of the three works we chose).  Thus, below are the three works I chose, along with my observations. 

Edward Mayer

-Repetition; contrast; found objects; bed/mattress springs; 
-maze/entrapment; different paths one can take; climbing rope ladder (e.g. used in training courses to go over walls)
-heavy vs. light (the foam looks heavier and lighter in different areas because of the color and how it's displayed) 
-chaos vs. simplicity; spiraling effect(s); control of balance
-white-colored central 'springs'/'coils' in middle = nucleus/heart (?) 
-obstacle course; miniature golf course; connections (and transitions) between the various different materials utilized 
-scale (it spans from one end of the gallery to the other)
-interacts with the other artists' work in the gallery (at times, it almost "frames" the other work)
-display/presentation choices -> hanging from rafters, sitting on the floor, taped to the floor, hanging on
 the wall, etc...

(More images of Edward Mayer's work are available on my flickr page -> click HERE)

(Or go to Amy Fichter's flickr page -> click HERE)
(UWEC gallery photos on Amy's flickr account are around pages 7/8 and up)

Cal Lane 

-Religious iconography (crosses; cathedral floor plans, etc...)
-Repetition within and between pieces 
-Playing with contradictions (e.g. feminine vs. masculine; relationship between rectangle and circles; etc...)
-Intricate/delicate/dainty lace motifs around the
 borders/edges [delicate = generally is a characteristic attributed to women]
-Maps w/grids and/or graphs throughout
 images(s) [navigation = generally is a skill attributed to men]
-natural objects on something man-made 
-Imagery Examples -> world map; lace; astrological signs; family emblem/'coat of arms;' castle; trees; mask; compass w/face above it [controlling (blowing) compass direction(s)]; anchor; dragon; doe and buck; human figure (in Buddhist-like pose); semi-truck; foliage; 
-ready-made objects -> cut-open, flattened, transformed, etc...
-specific r/m chosen = significant to the concept/theme/mood of the piece as a whole --> oil drums (and/or cans) [reference to the war in Iraq and religion(s)]
-color = rusty -> gives the work(s) an aged/ancient/old feeling 
-intricate lace motifs around the borders/edges 
-Functional change -> barrel/can with the function of holding oil has been transformed into a decoration-based form 
-three "barrels" on one wall displayed next to each other and three "cans" on a different wall displayed next to each
 other -> create 'triptychs' = symbolic of the 'Holy Trinity'

(To view more photos of Cal Lane's work, visit my flick page -> click HERE)

(Or, visit Amy Fichter's flickr page to see more photos -> click HERE)
(For the UWEC gallery photos on Amy's flickr account see pgs 7/8 and up)

Fraser Taylor 

-sexuality and decay 
-abstract drawings 
-the letters 'i,' 'o,' and 'u' intertwined in various components of the piece
-display/presentation choices (1)two pieces shown here on the left were sitting/resting on the floor and were also separated from the larger body of the composition (located near one of the gallery
 entrances); which was basically at the other end of the gallery--and--(2) the 'larger body of the composition' was displayed off the ground on various forms of fixture-hanging devices (e.g. 'L's,' nails, hangers, etc...)
-varieties in surface treatments (high gloss vs. matte vs. textures vs. etc...)
-Variety of mixed media (e.g. wood; paper; paint; nylon, jean, & other fabrics; metal; etc...)

(To view more photos of Fraser Taylor's work, visit my flickr page -> click HERE)

(Or visit Amy Fichter's flickr page -> click HERE)
(For UWEC gallery pics, see pgs. 7/8 and up)

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Science and Nature Project - Experimental Drawing Pieces

These are a few practice pieces I have done.  My drawings were done in pencil and pastel, then 'Delocroix' spray fixative was applied.  I then used 'GEL-WAX' (a type of candle wax) over top of the drawings.  

 I like how the wax is working (i.e. the visual effects of it).
 However, after letting my 'test pieces' sit over the weekend, there is some sort of oily residue around the images and thick areas of gel-wax.  So, I will probably need to reinforce my paper with something to help stabilize it - because I am guessing that the oils from the wax have weakened  my paper.  As of now, I do plan on cutting away the negative space of the drawing in the final piece (i.e. all areas where you see white paper will be gone).  

I have talked with a few different people who have used wax in the past on various projects; all of whom, either used bees-wax or other varieties of wax which had delicate working abilities (e.g. the wax cracked very easily when it was moved-esp. in cases where the surface area wasn't
 solid or stabilized, the wax chipped easily, etc...).  The gel-wax, I have found, does not crack and; however, it does pick-up finger prints very easily.  

My 'egg' didn't quite turn out like I was hoping it would, thus far.  We'll see what happens...

I've posted more of the photos I took on photobucket.com.  To view these images, click on any of the three images or follow the link specified below.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Group Feedback about 'Science and Nature' Project

My groups feedback, overall, was positive.  I was struggling with a few issues of presentation and received helpful suggestion of different mediums I may want to explore (e.g. 'artist wax').  Discussion of my concept took us in a few different directions, one of which was to U-tube.  Chrissy showed me this video and I absolutely love it!!!  This is a link to it: 

Monday, February 9, 2009

Science and Nature

Within the parameters of 'Science and Nature,' the question I am asking is, "How does the human reproduction process influence gender roles and stereotypes in our society?"  That is, how does the biological behavior of the sperm seeking the egg influence how men and women act in their daily lives?  The areas of science my question is related to are the biology of human sexual reproduction and sexology.  

My exploration of this topic will visually represent the action/process of reproduction (i.e. fertilization of the egg) - bringing the inside process to the outside; which is one theory proposed by certain feminists.  The notion suggested by such feminists is that gender roles are present in the physical biological systems of men and women, specifically in the act of sexual reproduction.  Millions of sperm are ejaculated by the male into the female's vagina, all seeking to 'win' the 'trophy' - which is to 'conquer' by fertilizing the female's egg, and thus, produce offspring.  The female's egg is in a subordinate role as she (i.e. the egg) is stagnant and waiting for the male to woo her (i.e. waiting to be fertilized).  Males, on the other hand, are all aggressively trying to get her first (i.e. fertilize the egg) and will fight (& kill) each other to win the 'war.'  So, if we were to think of this implication in society, men play the dominant role which is aggressive and competitive in nature; whereas women play the subordinate role that is passive and maternal.  The female sexual reproductive organs become a 'battlefield' where the strongest and most worthy male (i.e. sperm) is the one who wins the 'war.'  Men are the 'soldiers/warriors' attempting to be 'king of the mountain' by being the strongest & most aggressive, and by killing all those who get in their way (i.e. they eliminate the competition). 

My representation of this concept will consist of using mixed media.  I am planning on having a drawing of the internal female reproductive organs which will act as a 'landscape' (i.e. the 'battlefield'), and have (3-dimensional) toy soldiers wage war upon each other in their attempts to 'conquer' and 'win' the 'trophy' (the female's egg).  

I am still currently researching for the names of the specific people who have studied similar subject matter with regards to the connection between gender roles and human biological functions during reproduction.  There are many people who have done similar studies.  Darwin's theories, for example, examined human male and female characteristics and gender roles which coincided with his or her sex (e.g. 'sexual selection,' 'survival of the fittest,' etc...).

Monday, February 2, 2009

Past and Present Drawing; Experience, Interest, and Function

In class on Thursday, January 29th, we split-up into groups and discussed questions about what drawings have been used for in the past and what drawings are used for in the present, our experiences with drawing as a viewer and as a drawer, when drawing has been the most interesting to us, and what we think should be the function of drawing. 

Our list of what drawing has been used for in the past included documentation, drafting, under-paintings, maps, decorations, research ('studies') for other projects, recreational, commissions, etc...  We came to the conclusion that many of the uses today are similar; however, through technological advancements many of these have become obsolete.  It has become more conventional to use up-to-date tools (e.g. computer-based programs, documentation w/photographs, etc...).  

Our experiences were based upon design elements & principles and concepts present in drawings, appreciation, and adoration.  As a viewer and a drawer, we learn how to refine our own drawings; we are constantly learning more about how to draw and about what constitutes as a drawing.  Drawing has been most interesting to us, when we have pushed our own boundaries, and in doing so, were able to see the evolution/progression of the work created. Another interesting aspect of drawing, is when you look back at the artwork you did as a child - the simplicity, the freedom, and the use of technical aspects used (which, as a child, you didn't even know existed). The function of drawing is... open ...

Thursday, January 29, 2009


On Tuesday, January 27, 2009, the class broke into groups of 3-4 people and were asked to respond to a series of questions related to the 20 found drawings each person had to find. I was in a group with Kate, Noah, and Chrissy.  Our response to the 'definition of drawing' was that drawing can be an expressive form of visual language with freedom in subject(s), medium(s), and process, among other things... What constitutes a drawing is basically in the eye of the artist and what he or she declares to be a drawing.  A few of the characteristics that define excellence in drawing are: 

-lines and/or marks
-shading and highlighting
-blending of hues/values
-perspective and/or depth

Our group then decided which are the best two found drawings of each person.  To view each of my group member's found images, click on their name below to be directed to each person's blog. (Note: Each blog will only contain a few of their 20 images; however links to their flickr accounts are available.)

Sunday, January 25, 2009

'Found Drawings'
Look at more 'Found Drawings' at: http://photobucket.com/jensfounddrawings