Florida Tech mural in downtown Melbourne renovated by local artist | Arts & Entertainment | florida institute of technology

MELBOURNE – Florida Tech’s downtown Melbourne mural “Ad Astra,” which was originally painted by Christopher Maslow in 2016, has recently received a restoration by the artist, according to a release from the school.

The mural, 90 feet in length, is located on the western wall of a building at 800 E. New Haven Ave. at Waverly Place. It is named after Florida Tech’s school motto, “Ad Astra Per Scientiam,” which means “to the stars through science.”

The school added that there was a patch of damage where “it appears the wall fell away.” That damage has been repaired with Mr. Maslow, who lives in Melbourne and has a downtown Melbourne-based art studio and gallery called Outer Space, also updating some areas while totally repainting others.

“Because that repair had to be made, it wasn’t necessarily a bad thing because it prompted us to come out and have a look at the mural and see that certain areas had kind of faded and there was the obvious damage from the panel that had been removed,” Mr. Maslow said. “It led us to discuss moving forward with the renewal or restoration of the mural which is a great thing because the mural itself has become an iconic part of downtown Melbourne. It’s been there for seven years. We wanted to bring it back to life. We wanted to give it another 10 years before it would have to be maybe touched up again.”

Additionally, the school noted that there were new “Easter eggs” added including a plane to represent Florida Tech’s aviation program, a globe in reference to its international students, the phrase “Countdown College” which is an early nickname of the school, an Apollo 11 rocket to represent the school’s space tradition and an ROTC shield that is reflective of the school’s program.

“The original mural had some Easter eggs hidden within that and when we came back together to make the repairs it became an exciting opportunity to add some additional ones,” Mr. Maslow said. “The fun thing about the Easter eggs is we like to invite the new students or the alumni to go down and check out the mural and we encourage them to look for this list of Easter eggs that is hidden throughout, almost as kind of scavenger hunt.”

Mr. Maslow also noted that it took about six weeks to paint the original mural and that the renovation took “around the same time,” though he noted that he worked “simultaneously with other projects” during that time.

“Ten years ago, 15 years ago I used to drive by downtown and I would look at the very wall and I always dreamed of painting that specific wall,” Mr. Maslow said. “I just didn’t know how or when or how that would occur and I almost feel as though I manifested it because I vividly remember saying ‘I don’t know how or when but one day I’m going to paint that wall. It was one of the largest, most central walls in downtown Melbourne and I just dreamed of painting it so when the opportunity came, it was like a dream come true.”

Mr. Maslow also noted that the Florida Tech mural is particularly special to him.

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