In 2020, Brooklyn Center Transit Center was renovated with major changes to the interior and exterior vehicle surfaces. The City of Brooklyn Center had a grant from the CARES Act to create public art. The City sees the transit center as an important feature in its community and hired two artists to create murals on the exterior facades. Through a selection process, Kao Lee Thao and Anika Hsiung Schneider were selected to create the murals. Both artists engaged the community to gather images and inspiration for their artwork. Instead of hanging their work separately, the artists decided to have the different pieces hanging near each other and integrating two of them together. The City has donated these works to be part of Metro Transit’s permanent collection and are covering maintenance costs for the first 10 years. These art pieces are complimented by digitized images from the community on a monitor in the lobby of the transit center.
Artist: Kao Lee Thao
With a background in psychology, Kao Lee’s artwork finds its inspiration in dreams and personal experience. She is a self-taught painter who owns her own 3D animation company, Folklore Studios, through which she combines her love of storytelling and art. Her creations speak to her on a subconscious level defining what the end result will be, “I just open an inner channel and let my subconscious take over.”
Inner Swirl | Imagination Sparks Inspiration
Artist: Anika Hsiung Schneider
Anika Hsiung Schneider is a narrative artist who draws on lived experiences, memory, and family history. With an Asian Mixed female identity, she resides in a highly racialized body that also exists in a liminal state. This connection to a liminal state of being closely connects her work to themes of loss, transitional spaces, and visualizing the intangible.
The Metro Transit Public Art Collection consists of approximately 70 works by 27 different artists. Here are some facts about the collection.
Artist Janet Zweig has work at the most light-rail stations (seven). Her Small Kindnesses, Weather Permitting interactive audio and video boxes, can be found at Nicollet Mall, Government Plaza, US Bank Stadium, Franklin Avenue, Lake Street/Midtown, 46th Street and Fort Snelling stations.
Deborah Mersky has created public art at the second most light-rail stations. Her laser-cut fences and images can be found at Mall of America, American Boulevard, V.A. Medical Center, 50th Street/Minnehaha Park and 38th Street stations.
Mall of America Station
American Boulevard Station
VA Medical Center Station
50th Street Station
38th Street Station
There are only two artists with work on both the Blue Line and Green Line: Janet Lofquist and JoAnn Verburg.
You can find Lofquist's public art on the Blue Line at:
VA Medical Center Station (Blue Line)
10th Street Station (Green Line)
Robert Street Station (Green Line)
Prospect Park Station (Green Line)
You can find JoAnn Verburg's glass art on the Blue Line at:
28th Avenue Station (Blue Line)
Bloomington Central Station (Blue Line)
46th Street Station (Blue Line)
Lake Street/Midtown Station (Blue Line)
Central Station (Green Line)