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A café and art space, XIA supports the creative work and entrepreneurship of Asian American artists & makers by providing resources and spaces to showcase and grow.


XIA Gallery & Cafe envisions an artist led space that produces economic and cultural value and strength to all artists & makers, regardless of background. A creative space where arts & culture increases visibility, uplifts communities, and creates positive impacts. ​

When we say "Artists," we mean ALL ARTISTS: Artists, Makers, Performers, Writers, Photographers, Designers, Carpenters, Farmers, and so much more!


XIA Gallery & Cafe is a creative space curated by a nonprofit organization called, Asian Economic Development Association (AEDA). XIA is part of AEDA's creative placemaking project for Little Mekong Cultural District. Little Mekong is a business of communities (majority of who are Asian & BIPOC) located between Mackubin and Marion on University Avenue in Saint Paul. Through creative placemaking, XIA helps Little Mekong to cultivate arts and cultural assets for economic development and community preservation. 

In 2016-2019, XIA Gallery & Cafe was originally known as XIA ART. XIA ART was a smaller space dedicated to exhibiting and selling creative work. Due to the pandemic, XIA ART closed down. In 2022, XIA ART rebranded to XIA Gallery & Cafe and renovated the space to include a cafe and a seperate space for exhibitions. XIA Gallery & Cafe continues to align with it's original mission and vision from XIA ART. 

AEDA organized in 2006 to support and advocate for Asian small businesses in response to Light Rail Transit (LRT) development on University Ave (2006-2013). In 2009, AEDA incorporated as a nonprofit to continue its efforts. 

AEDA creates pathways to asset and wealth creation for Minnesota Asian communities. We implement integrated services in small business development, asset development, financial capability, workforce development, and cultural placemaking. AEDA’s mission centers on addressing the systemic challenges and barriers preventing Asian Americans from accessing economic opportunities and achieving economic inclusion.

In 2012, the Little Mekong brand was launched to support and highlight the Asian & BIPOC small businesses through business development, economic development, and community preservation. The brand was created with the recognition of the 30-year history of Asian businesses and the Asian community in the area.

The Little Mekong Cultural District (Little Mekong) was named after the Mekong River that flows through many Southeast Asian nations, including China, Myanmar, Laos, Thailand, Cambodia, and Vietnam. Like a river connecting many ethnic Asian cultures through space and time, the district’s namesake seeks to honor the heritage, history, and presence of the businesses owned and operated by Saint Paul’s Southeast Asian population.

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