Strolling through the streets of Edina, residents and visitors can enjoy an abundance of public art. “Art can do amazing things,” says Edina Arts and Culture commissioner Cheryl Gunness. “It can build community.”
Each year the Arts and Culture Commission sends out a call for sculptors to submit their work. Three sculptures are chosen by community votes to be People’s Choice Award winners, and out of those three, one particular sculpture is chosen to be added to the city’s collection for a year. The artist is also awarded a cash prize. This year’s winning sculpture is titled Lost in Space.
The inspiration for Lost in Space came from artist Judd Nelson’s then 17-year-old daughter. One day, when his daughter had a group of friends over, he passed by her room and was astonished by what he saw. “It must have been four or five of them in the bedroom,” Nelson says. “All of them were in different corners, and all of them were on their phones.” This experience inspired Nelson to create the sculpture of a person perusing their mobile phone that now stands at Grandview Square. “I made it life-size,” says Nelson. “I want people to be able to see themselves or their kids [in the sculpture].” Nelson also hopes the piece will be a conversation starter and a reason to connect.
“It makes you really think,” says Gunness. “Are you one of those people who is lost in space?”