The “Out of the Blue” sculpture was “transferred” to the 9th and 9th neighborhoods of SLC.

SALT LAKE CITY — The Salt Lake City Arts Council Monday night “raid” the city’s newest public art piece.

It is a life size sculpture of a breaching humpback whale.

It’s called “Out of the Blue” and it’s in the middle of the roundabout at 900 South and 1100 East in the 9th and 9th neighborhood.

The sculpture is the work of artist Stephen Kesler and artist Mike Murdock painted the mural on its surface.

Kesler has been working on the sculpture for six months.

“It sort of tells the story of how I found the 9th and 9th neighborhoods as a teenager,” Kesler said.

He grew up in Midvale and admits to being overwhelmed when he first visited in the 9th and 9th.

“Something I’ve never seen in Salt Lake before,” Kesler said. “The culture, the music, the cafes, vegetarian restaurants, for Salt Lake it was out of the blue for me.”

Hence the title for the whale sculpture.

Mayor Erin Mendenhall and Arts Council Executive Director Felicia Baca were among those who cut the ribbon for the new artwork.

Kesler thanked the community and art council for their support, but acknowledged his sculpture took a little getting used to.

“I know dropping a whale off in the middle of someone’s neighborhood can be controversial and I hope over the years people will love it as much as I have.”

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