Taric has always been the butt of the joke in the League of Legends community and, let's be honest, this new splash art really isn't helping. He's picked up a new weapon, is soon to get a new lore but he's still as campy as ever.
The new splash has been released in the wake of the webcomic 'The Ascent', which profiles Taric's search for redemption on the slopes of Mount Targon, as part of the comprehensive Mount Targon lore rework. Taric's new lore, when it's released, will fill the last slot on the Targon splash page, though for now his story is being hinted at in the interactive webcomic:
Taric's old lore was notably shallow — he had no real attachment to any faction nor any specific part of Runeterra or Valoran, and even his connections to other characters was a stretch. His entire backstory was a fairly simple story about a boy who was interested in the power of gems. This lore retcon thus far seems to be placing him as a former soldier, an 'oathbreaker' haunted by his past.
It's far more interesting as a story but... well, he still looks pretty 'outrageous'.
Most notably, Taric has left behind his iconic gem-studded hammer and shield, and will be picking up a three-pronged mace. He's dropped his title of 'Gem Knight' and will instead become 'Taric, Shield of Valoran'. He also looks a lot like Fabio.
You can also check out the first teaser for Taric's rework, 'Downfall', here: