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Eric Stein: Crafting Steel into Surreal Wonders

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Eric Stein, an international artist hailing from the picturesque Hudson Valley in New York, is one such a great artist of the craft. His work predominantly revolves around fabricated steel sculptures, which have found homes in numerous sculpture parks and private collections across the globe. Eric’s artistic journey is one defined by an unwavering commitment to pushing the boundaries of steel as a medium, culminating in his awe-inspiring sculptures like “Undefined” and “Fracture.”


One of Eric Stein’s most iconic creations is the monumental sculpture titled “Undefined.” This colossal work of art, standing tall at an impressive 23 feet, is a testament to the artist’s deep reverence for surrealism and nature’s awe-inspiring grandeur. Eric completed this artwork during his residency at the Buffalo Creek Art Center and Sculpture Park in Nevada.


“Undefined” is a stunning all-steel sculpture, measuring 94 inches in width and 107 inches in length. Its towering height of 276 inches ensures that it commands attention and reverence from anyone who gazes upon it. This sculpture draws inspiration from the paintings and writings of Yves Tanguy, a well known artist in the Surrealist art movement. It also pays homage to the Sierra Nevada mountains, which rise aggressively from the plains, creating a dramatic and awe-inspiring spectacle.

What sets “Undefined” apart is its audacious emergence from the Earth’s surface, seemingly defying gravity with its severe angle. Achieving this daring posture required a meticulously engineered support system, cleverly concealed below the ground. The base, entirely subterranean, adds to the sculpture’s impact by creating an illusion of weightlessness. It took approximately seven yards of reinforced and custom-stepped concrete to create this engineering marvel.

The piece was installed at the Buffalo Creek Art Center in 2018 and has since become an integral part of the sculpture park’s permanent collection. “Undefined” captivates spectators with its surreal beauty, a harmonious blend of steel’s rigidity and the fluidity of imagination.

“Fracture,” another exceptional work by Eric Stein, explores the intersection of violence and grace. This steel sculpture, measuring 120 inches in width, 108 inches in length, and towering at 180 inches, is a study in contrasts. It evokes a sense of violent eruption while maintaining an underlying aura of grace and elegance.

One of the most captivating aspects of “Fracture” is its versatility in interpretation. Viewers are invited to delve into their own perceptions, and the sculpture rewards each observer with a unique experience. Some may see an aggressive statement, while others might visualize three dancers in motion. This multi-layered approach to art is a hallmark of Eric Stein’s work, allowing each person to find their personal narrative within the sculpture.

“Fracture” is constructed from steel tubing, a signature element in Eric’s oeuvre known as the ‘pixel.’ Each bend and joint in the sculpture is thoughtfully accented with action plates, adding visual intrigue and complexity. While the sculpture appears to erupt forcefully from the Earth’s surface, Eric ingeniously designed a support structure that remains nearly flat, with a base only 2 to 3 inches in height. This design choice adds to the overall mystique of “Fracture,” making it a truly captivating piece of art.

Currently, “Fracture” is on exhibit in Johnson City, Tennessee, having been leased to the city for two years as part of their Art in Public Places program. Eric Stein’s ability to meld aggressive energy with graceful form in “Fracture” offers viewers a unique opportunity to explore the duality of human emotions and experiences through the medium of steel.

Eric Stein’s artistic journey is a testament to his unwavering dedication to the craft of steel sculpture. His ability to breathe life into this rigid medium, transforming it into works of art that evoke emotion and contemplation, sets him apart as a master of his trade. “Undefined” and “Fracture” are just two examples of the incredible breadth and depth of his artistic expression.

In “Undefined,” Eric pays homage to Surrealism and the grandeur of nature, pushing the boundaries of steel to create a towering masterpiece that defies gravity. Meanwhile, “Fracture” explores the nuances of aggression and grace, inviting viewers to discover their own narratives within its intricate design.

As an international artist whose work graces sculpture parks and private collections, Eric Stein continues to inspire and provoke thought through his steel symphonies. His ability to meld the raw power of steel with the grace of imagination speaks to the creative nature of his art.

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