Austin’s tallest public art installation, ‘Tau Ceti,’ unveiled downtown

Austin
Tau Ceti 1

AUSTIN (KXAN) — A new art installation in downtown Austin was dedicated Wednesday by the Art in Public Places program of the City of Austin’s Cultural Arts Division. The mural, “Tau Ceti” stands at 10-stories high, making it the tallest piece of public art in the city.

“Tau Ceti”, pronounced t’ow set-ee, is painted into the corner of a parking garage on the corner of Second and Brazos streets. The inverted color gradients are made to refract sunlight off the surrounding buildings to provide different experiences throughout the day.

The piece’s name is a reference to a single star in the constellation Cetus. The star shares a similar infrared spectrum to our own sun, which is why it was chosen as the title for this mural.

“My biggest inspiration was the light, I really wanted to capture a way for people to see the light. Basically, I didn’t know how it was going to look until I was out here painting it,” said the artist behind the piece Josef Kristofoletti. “It’s one thing to make a model and sketches of something like this but you really don’t feel what it’s doing until you are right here working.”

Kristofoletti is an Austin-based artist born in Nagyvarad Transylvania. His projects have primarily focused on mural paintings that present ideas addressing nature, technology, space and architecture. He utilized a swing stage scaffolding to paint the mural, similar to those used when cleaning windows on tall buildings. The entire mural was painted by hand, which took around five weeks to complete.

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