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'Houston Radio Radar Reflectors' arrives at Cougar Place

Lining the front of the commons area of the new Cougar Place residential facility is the University of Houston's newest art addition.

The colorful six-piece abstract steel sculpture is called "Houston Radio Radar Reflectors" and is the creation of Nathan Carter, a Brooklyn, N.Y-based artist. Each piece weighs around 1,000 pounds and took the help of a large crane in order to set into place. It was installed Aug. 5.

Mike Guidry, the curator for the Public Art Collection for the UH System, said the pieces were hauled in on a large truck from St. Louis, where they were fabricated.

In his project proposal to the University of Houston Campus Art Committee last year, Carter said he wanted to use color, shape and line to communicate to people of all ages a playful sense of discovery. When viewed from the front and from within the building, his vision was for the piece to appear as a very colorful and visually engaging sculpture.

"Nathan Carter's artwork can often appear unassuming, but upon investigation it's quite complex aesthetically and conceptually," Guidry said.

The sculpture was purchased through the Percent for the Art program, in which 1 percent of the construction budget for every new building goes toward funding art. The program was established in 1966. UH now has close to 300 diverse art pieces on display. System-wide, that number is more than 500.