Fall Into the Arts Wraps Up Summer Art Festivals for Edina Artists

Edina’s artists make a scene this season at the arts festival at Centennial Lakes Park.
Pat Dawson, left, and Adama Sow, right; Dawson was the director of Fall into the Arts for many years and retired last year. Sow is from Senegal, and also teaches at the Edina Art Center.

The annual Fall into the Arts Festival fills Centennial Lakes park with even more color each year as artists and food vendors set up along the waterfront for art fans from across the Twin Cities. More than 250 booths are set up, with both new and veteran artists showcasing their work.

Veteran participant Sandra Shaughnessy, a pottery artist, has been working with clay for as long as she can remember. With a master of fine arts degree in ceramics, she has taught classes around the metro area, including pottery at the Edina Art Center, and has worked on her own art for quite some time. She says her sage-colored pots and dishes are “ceremoniously functional.” She wants her pots to be used, but also appreciated on a deeper level.

The community created among this event’s artists and vendors is unique, Shaughnessy says. Artists exchange work or buy each other’s pieces as a way to encourage one another. Shaughnessy explains that often artists can also tell how much they are valued based on how well the fair is run, and how much support they receive from volunteers or event staff. Artists at this event feel very well loved. The festival’s executive director, Michael Frey, an artist himself, wants the festival and its participants to be of the highest quality and he believes participating artists in the festival benefit from working alongside each other.