Look Homeward is a 20x20 oil by Shirley Fachilla.
I wanted my painting to clearly be one of a cemetery, but I also wanted it to seem a beautiful place and to exude a mood of… well, cheer.
The canvas depicts the cemetery at Carnton Plantation in Franklin, Tennessee. Carnton’s owners, the McGavocks, donated the property to serve as a burial place for the hundreds of Confederate soldiers who died in the extremely bloody Battle of Franklin during the American Civil War. [To read a bit more about that battle, see my prior post, here.]
Carnton Plantation has a fascinating history. It was a major player in the fight and in its aftermath. A best-selling novel Widow of the South was written about it. A novel that I found even more interesting and moving, Howard Bahr’s Black Flower also describes the battle and the part Carnton played in it.
The cemetery itself is long, rather narrow strip of land housing row after row of small stone markers, each denoting a grave. The men and boys in those graves were buried far, far from home.
Carnton is hosting an art show and sale to benefit the Battle of Franklin Trust. The Chestnuts, Plein Air Painters for the Land, will have paintings there. My painting Look Homeward will be among them. If you’re in the area, I hope you can come by. The dates and times are: Friday and Saturday, July 15 and 16, 10 to 7 and Sunday, July 17, 12 to 5.
The place is Carnton Plantation, 1345 Carnton Lane, Franklin, Tennessee 37064.