A monumental new mural from critically acclaimed artist José Parlá will soon join the award-winning Landmarks collection at the University of Texas at Austin. Featuring his characteristic traces of collage and distinctive calligraphic marks, the mural will be the artist’s most ambitious project to date.
The colossal piece will occupy some 4000 square feet, covering a 25-foot-by-160-foot wall in the entrance to the Zlotnik Family Ballroom of Robert B. Rowling Hall. Rowling Hall is set to open in the spring of 2018 as the new graduate education building and architectural anchor for the McCombs School of Business' graduate program.
Parla’s sweeping mural will be a signature feature of the new space, evoking Austin’s natural environment and its urban cityscape. His work is the latest announcement from the Landmarks collection at UT, which has commissioned dozens of public installations from contemporary artists across UT’s 433-acre main campus. Open to all, the collection provides students and visitors with opportunities to engage with great art.
“The sheer scale of this undertaking is arresting,” says Landmarks’ founding director, Andrée Bober, in a statement, “and José Parlá is the perfect artist to tackle it ... Beyond the visual delight of his painting, I think people will connect with his evocation of history, memory, and the experience of life and the landscape of Austin.”
The unveiling will take place in January 2018, with an artist Q&A led by American culture critic and curator, Carlo McCormick.