The 22-acre Capitol lawn offers a respite in downtown Austin and features a monument to the state's early Tejanos. Designed and sculpted by native Texan Armando Hinojosa, a massive slab of granite is topped by bronze figures representing Spanish exploration, pre-Anglo settlement, and the birth of ranching in Texas. The idea for the monument was born in 2000 when South Texas physician Cayetano Barrera realized none of the 18 monuments at the Capitol recognized Hispanic contributions. It took 12 years for the Tejano Monument Committee to get the 10-piece statue created, installed, and unveiled.
Inside the Capitol, portraits of legislators document diversity over time. The complex and monument are free and open to the public seven days a week, with guided and audio tours available.