Millikin Student’s Artwork Pays Loving Tribute to the Strength of Macon County

Shannon Cook with CFMC artwork IMG 0212 copy cropped

A Millikin University senior art education major has painted a tribute to the generosity of Macon County donors and the value that nonprofit organizations bring to our region.

Shannon Cook of Decatur, formerly of Cerro Gordo, Ill., painted the three-panel mural, “Love with Impact,” this summer after the completion of her residency as the university’s 2021 Robert Harrison Crowder Artist-in-Residence at Blue Connection, Millikin's student-run retail art gallery. The artwork, done at the request of The Community Foundation of Macon County (CFMC), depicts a collage of local businesses and icons, as well as a sampling of the work done by local nonprofits to help our community thrive. The experience was eye-opening for Cook.

“Art allows you to say something that you can't with words,” she says. “I learned how far-reaching donors’ generosity is in the community around me and just how incredible is the work of our local nonprofits. Doing this project gave me a lot of insight.”

The completed artwork, each panel approximately 4’ wide by 6’ high, now fills the hall of the offices of The Community Foundation of Macon County in downtown Decatur.

“These three panels illustrate the three-fold commitment of The Community Foundation of Macon County,” says Natalie Beck, CFMC president and CEO. “We are steadfast in the myriad of ways we assist individuals and entities with their giving; our faithful stewardship of the resources entrusted to us; and our ongoing dedication to caring for our community.”