“I always had a moral sense that I need the inhabitants of a painting to be doing something, not just being,” the British artist Cecily Brown told Rachel Cusk in a 2019 New York Times Magazine article. Brown’s works have long been characterized by movement—like the stills in a flipbook animation, they capture incomplete motion. But amid the blur, there is a keen sense of familiarity. As Cusk put it, Brown’s art is “Like an explosion in a museum,” with bits of iconic works reanimated by Brown’s whirling brushstrokes. This merging of past and future—images seared into the art-historical canon upended by Brown’s aesthetic of propulsion—foregrounds her solo exhibition at Blenheim Palace, the first solo exhibition it has ever hosted, and its first show of contemporary art. Drawing from the traditional imagery of country estates, Brown’s take on hunting scenes and pastoral landscapes probes our continuing nostalgia for the manor-born. —C.J.F.
Blenheim Palace RJXJ+7V Woodstock, United Kingdom Get Directions »