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Billy Morrow Jackson's 'Windwalker' Donated to ACES College
Illinois Ag Connection - 05/24/2019

The College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences at the University of Illinois has acquired a work of art by renowned painter Billy Morrow Jackson.

The painting, "Windwalker," was donated to the college by the artist's wife of 30 years, Blanche Mary Jackson. It is currently on display in the dean's conference room, 224 Mumford Hall.

"'Windwalker' is a prominent oil-on-canvas painting that depicts a contemplative young woman within a windswept prairie field, enveloped by a dramatic, cerulean blue sky," Blanche Jackson says. "Billy created this work in 1963 as a gift for me. Our family is pleased that it is now available for public viewing."

Billy Morrow Jackson (1926-2006) was an acclaimed American artist and professor. He received his Master of Fine Arts from the U of I School of Fine and Applied Arts, where he also taught from 1954 until his retirement in 1987. He is known for his rural Midwestern prairie scenes and poignant coastal scenes of Martha's Vineyard. He was also a humanitarian who was passionate about education and social justice, Blanche Jackson says.

"I am truly grateful for the generosity Ms. Jackson has shown by donating this beautiful painting to us," says Kim Kidwell, dean of the College of ACES. "It is proudly displayed in our conference room and has already elicited interesting conversation among the many users of this space, which I am certain will continue for many years to come."

Jackson's work is already familiar to people frequenting the College of ACES campus. His painting "Ag Time," which depicts Abraham Lincoln signing the Morrill Act that established Land Grant colleges in 1862, adorns the south wall of the ACES Library, Information and Alumni Center.

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