COOKEVILLE — The main hallway wall at the Rehabilitation Center at Cookeville Regional Medical Center recently came to life as students wrapped up work on a mural spanning 200 square feet, thanks to the collaborative efforts of the Tennessee Tech University art education department, local fifth grade artists and the Cookeville Regional Charitable Foundation.
The idea for the mural came out of discussions between Sally Crain-Jager, chair of the Art for Healing program at the Foundation; John Bell, Foundation director; and Pat Thompson, director of Art Education at TTU. Thompson then pulled in Art Education residency students who tackled the mural as an outreach project for the ARED4872 class.
“We decided to make this a real community effort and involve fifth grade students in the elements of the mural,” Thompson explained. “Art Residency students tackled the overall design and more complex components and each fifth grader created a unique frog, fish, flower or lily pad to include in the final mural.”
The mural is based on the classic “Water Lily Pond” by Claude Monet.
Work on the mural began in early October and continued through mid-November. Grace Plemons worked with fifth graders at Stone Elementary in Cumberland County, Laurie Giampietra worked with students from Central View Elementary in White County, Sydney Ray worked with students at Learning Way Elementary in Shelbyville and Leah Looper worked with students at Avery Trace Middle School in Cookeville. Brianna Wainright was a guest artist.
Patients have enjoyed watching the mural take shape, Warren Johnson, Jr., rehab director at CRMC, said.
“The mural is full of color and life,” he said. “It is exactly the kind of piece that we needed here at the Rehab Center.”
Patients would often stop and watch the artists at work.
“I know our patients and staff will continue to enjoy this happy, uplifting mural for years to come,” Johnson said.
This mural was sponsored by the Foundation and Sherwin Williams of Cookeville.
“I am so proud of this mural,” John Bell, Foundation director, said. “This project has taken a plain, sterile wall and transformed it into an inspirational piece that has created a more friendly, more inspiring environment for patients. Thank you, Sherwin Williams, for donating much of the supplies and paint needed for the mural. Thank you, TTU art students for your hours of hard work. Thank you to the fifth graders for working hard in art class to create such wonderful frogs, fish and lily pads. And thank you to Pat Thompson and Sally Crain-Jager for collaborating to plan such a large and meaningful project.”
Photo Courtesy of the Herald Citizen