Prospect Cemetery Prairie

Ford County, Illinois
August 17, 2019
Oil on canvas
9 x 12 in. (22.9 x 30.5 cm)

Private collection

Lazy summer afternoon doldrums were no match for the excitement of exploring and then capturing an impression of the real McCoy, a small piece of the original Grand Prairie of Illinois. Established in 1859 and never plowed, this segment of Prospect Cemetery, just a few acres in size, had all the colorful diversity I would have imagined in a high-quality black soil prairie remnant. Prominent in the view I selected were prairie dock, blazing star, rattlesnake master, big bluestem, and the dormant heads of coneflowers—and there was so much more and in every direction. I would not have had any subjects to choose from had the state not dedicated this cemetery as a preserve in 1976.

Painted on location. Canvas mounted to hardboard.

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