Sarah Leismer wanted to bring a little bit of the city to the collection of mostly rural-inspired crop art on display at the Minnesota State Fair.
The result: a detailed representation of a Metro Transit light-rail train passing the fast-developing Vikings stadium in downtown Minneapolis.
“I wanted to embrace Minnesota and I thought what better way to do that than to do something from the city that I love,” said Leismer, a frequent transit user who moved from Washington D.C. to an apartment along the METRO Blue Line two years ago.
As an engineer, Leismer was drawn to the cranes and activity unfolding in Downtown East. She and her brother took several photos around the stadium construction site and were most inspired by a photo of the train passing in front of its still-forming frame.
Leismer made a sketch of the photo and then visited the bulk bins at Mississippi Market to make her selections. The crop art includes wild rice, poppy seeds and dyed millet. (“It’s really hard to find red and blue seeds,” Leismer said.)
Judges appreciated the dose of city life, awarding Leismer’s piece a white ribbon (third place) in the dyed or painted category. The piece can be found in the Agriculture Horticulture Building.
This is actually the second consecutive year Leismer has entered the crop art competition with a transit-inspired piece. In 2014, she created crop art featuring the METRO Green Line and a city skyline that was given a red ribbon (second place).
“It’s a different subject matter than you usually see, so I think people like it,” she said.
> The best route to the State Fair is on the bus
2014 Crop Art by Sarah Leismer
2002 Crop Art by John Levin, Metro Transit's Director of Strategic Initiatives