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Artist Jorge Selaron found dead on iconic, multi-colored steps in Brazil bearing his name

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    A woman descends a stairway that was decorated by Chilean artist Jorge Selaron, which he titled the "Selaron Stairway" in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013. Selaron, an eccentric Chilean artist and longtime Rio resident who created a massive, colorful tile stairway in the bohemian Lapa district that's popular with tourists, was found dead on the stairway on Thursday. He was 54. Authorities are investigating the cause of death. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana) (The Associated Press)

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    Young visitors from Colombia play on a stairway that was decorated by Chilean artist Jorge Selaron, which he titled the "Selaron Stairway" in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013. Selaron, an eccentric Chilean artist and longtime Rio resident who created a massive, colorful tile stairway in the bohemian Lapa district that's popular with tourists, was found dead on the stairway on Thursday. He was 54. Authorities are investigating the cause of death. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana) (The Associated Press)

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    Tourist from Germany take photos on a stairway that was decorated by Chilean artist Jorge Selaron, which he titled the "Selaron Stairway" in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013. Selaron, an eccentric Chilean artist and longtime Rio resident who created a massive, colorful tile stairway in the bohemian Lapa district that's popular with tourists, was found dead on the stairway on Thursday. He was 54. Authorities are investigating the cause of death. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana) (The Associated Press)

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    People walk up and down a stairway that was decorated by Chilean artist Jorge Selaron, which he titled the "Selaron Stairway" in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Thursday, Jan. 10, 2013. Selaron, an eccentric Chilean artist and longtime Rio resident who created a massive, colorful tile stairway in the bohemian Lapa district that's popular with tourists, was found dead on the stairway on Thursday. He was 54. Authorities are investigating the cause of death. (AP Photo/Felipe Dana) (The Associated Press)

The body of a Chilean artist has been found on the outdoor staircase he had transformed into a symbol of Rio de Janeiro.

Rio de Janeiro police wouldn't disclose the cause of death — and are not discarding foul play. They removed Jorge Selaron's body from the 215-step staircase in the bohemian neighborhood of Lapa on Thursday.

Neighbors, tourists and well-wishers braved a hard rain to pay him tribute.

Selaron was an iconic figure in Rio, with his sweeping handlebar moustache and friendly demeanor.

Friends and collaborators from around the world sent or brought tiles to contributing to the steps' facade.