Meet the Austin artist behind your perfectly framed ACL Fest photos
The headliners at Austin City Limits Music Festival change every year, but one thing remains the same: a long, long line forms in the middle of Zilker Park where attendees wait to snap a photo in the iconic ACL Frame.
The frame, which is literally a frame (picture four sides and an empty middle for attendees to stand), is a popular attraction at the festival. It comes with a background of Austin's skyline, making for a perfect Instagram post.
This year, local artist Zuzu designed the frame. She spray painted it over several daysbefore the first weekend of the fest. It's covered in bright pink, blue, green, orange and purple. "#ACLFEST" is written in big white letters on top of the frame and Zuzu's Instagram handle is written below. She said that event organizers C3 encouraged her to put her information in big letters instead of a small signature in the corner.
The painter, who goes by one name, went to the University of Texas, where she graduated in 2010. When she was 19 or 20, she went to her first ACL Fest. She and a friend were broke and paddle boarded on Lady Bird Lake and sat in the water outside Zilker Park to listen to the music.
"I've come pretty much every year," she said.
Zuzu is bright like her art, both in how she decorates herself and how she speaks. Her blonde hair has neon pink and purple strips in it, and her nails are neon yellow. She's honored to be the frame artist this year.
"Being the first female to have painted the frame makes me feel really proud," she said.
And she gets to share her love for Austin through the frame, too.
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The artist was in Oaxaca, Mexico, when she got the call that she was going to be this year's frame artist.
"I was elated when I found out," Zuzu, 34, said.
Zuzu was up against three or four other artists for the spot. After the festival ends, the frame will live in a C3 warehouse.
"This is living an amazing life," she said of the frame. "It's living it's best life for these two weeks."