Edina Art Fair Announces 2023 Featured Artist: Suyao Tian

This year’s fair showcases the “Art of Connection,” bringing forth art that connects local and global communities

Photos provided  

“The Tropical Jungle,” Suyao Tian

The theme of the 2023 Edina Art Fair, considered one of the top 50 art fairs in the United States, is “Art of Connection.” “We live in a time when so many [people] feel disconnected from each other,” says Max Musicant, executive director of the Edina Art Fair. For the 2023 Edina Art Fair, he adds, “We’re leaning into and highlighting the role that art plays to connect us to each other, our inner selves, and the world around us.”

To that end, the art fair selected Suyao Tian, out of more than 250 artists, as its 2023 Featured Artist. Her ethereal watercolors combine graphic elements with abstracted shapes from nature, in quietly exuberant expressions of creativity. “For me, painting is a language through which I connect to the world,” Tian says. “My work creates a peaceful and safe space that hopefully invites the viewers’ mind to wander and explore but is not an overtly symbolic object to suggest the direction.”

Tian is an artist, designer, and owner of Viewpoint Gallery in St. Paul. She is an adjunct faculty at Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD) where she earned her master’s degree in fine art. She currently serves on the Executive Board of Art Buddies and the Northeast Minneapolis Arts Association (NEMAA) and is passionately engaged with multiple galleries and organizations across the state. Born in the 1980s in China during the one-child-only generation, Tian began her studies in Music Education at Qinghai Normal University and Xiamen University in China. She later came to the U.S. in 2011 where she began her studies in art and design.

Tian’s watercolor, “The Tropical Jungle,” is featured on all promotional materials for this year’s fair, which will be held June 2-4 in the 50th & France business district of Edina. “We chose Suyao as this year’s featured artist because of how her work embodies this year’s theme of the ‘Art of Connection’,” Musicant explains. “This comes through so beautifully in her painting and how she uses her art, gallery, and overall practice to engage with communities near and far.”

In addition to her exquisite paintings, Tian also creates murals, wallpaper, and hand-painted ornaments. Her work will be available for purchase during the art fair, along with such diverse media as ceramics, enamel, fiber, glass, jewelry, mixed media, photography, sculpture, wearable art, wood, oil, and acrylic. In addition to celebrating juried artists from the local and global creative communities, the three-day fair also features entertainment, a kids’ zone, two craft beer gardens, and numerous food options. New to the fair this year is a vintage clothing market.

A free shuttle runs daily from Southdale Shopping Center to the U.S. Bank parking lot near the Edina Art Fair. Free parking is available in the four ramps in the 50th & France area. Bike corrals are also provided. Edina Art Fair hours this year are Friday, June 2, noon to 7 p.m.; Saturday, June 3, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.; and Sunday, June 4, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

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