The author's use of the mil-lennia-old, multi-dimensional en-caustic painting technique, which uses hot colored wax as a paint-ing medium, led her to the literary and artistic concept of the golem, which she sees as a metaphor for the appropriate use of technol-ogy. This, in turn, prompted the author to learn more about en-caustic from an industrial-hygiene perspective. Owing to the com-mendable handling characteristics of encaustic, many painters after using it never go back to using oil or acrylic paints; however, the act of heating wax creates airborne substances that can cause long-term health effects to artists who do not take common-sense pre-cautions. This article offers infor-mation to help artists set up safer encaustic/conventional painting studios. The author also intro-duces encaustic's long history, describes various encaustic tech-niques and lists permanent pig-ments that are generally safer than other professionally ac-cepted materials.

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