MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Nothing symbolizes summer better in the Twin Cities than the patio. It’s why the Minnesota Museum of American Art is bringing back its “patio nights.”

And this year, a sculpture is helping people live better by sparking an interest in art.

It’s called “Scattered Light,” and it’s more or less a bunch of light bulbs on strings made by San Francisco artist Jim Campbell. At night, however, the sculpture becomes the centerpiece of a summer tradition. This time “Patio Night” is at Upper Landing Park in St. Paul, Minn.

“We’re really excited to have patio nights back,” said Jessari Maudal Kuppe of the Minnesota Museum of American Art. “It’s been received really well by the community.”

There are food, drinks, and live music on Friday night’s inside City House, an old municipal grain elevator renovated by the city. The sculpture is outside, near the venue.

“We really, really wanted to cultivate something around it so that people could enjoy it when it’s suppose to be enjoyed: at dark,” Kuppe said.

Some 16,000 LED lights make up the sculpture, which stands 20 feet tall and 80 feet wide. And it’s when one stands back when the magic happens. Movement.

The sculpture sways lightly, like a miniature portrait of a galaxy in motion or a collection of huge, lazy fireflies. It’s a twist on spending some time on the patio and provides a little sparkle in St. Paul this summer.

“It’s a great way to bring together art, music and the people of the Twin Cities,” Kuppe said.

The Minnesota Museum of American Art doesn’t have a permanent home, but some of its collection will be loaned to different colleges next year.

There are two “Patio Nights” left at Upper Landing Park this summer.

Find more information on Patio Nights here.


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