Exhibition: ‘Capability’ Brown and the landscapes of Middle England

Compton Verney 25 June 2011 to 2 October 2011

Set in its own ‘Capability’ Brown landscape, Compton Verney is the ideal location for the first-ever exhibition about internationally-renowned landscape designer Lancelot ‘Capability’ Brown (1716-83). This exhibition brings the man and his genius to life through a series of case studies of ‘Capability’ Brown landscapes from the Midlands. It looks at how Brown designed his natural, neoclassical arcadias; how his landscapes were designed to work in practice; how Brown responded to technological advances in shooting and carriage-making; and how he addressed the enormous task of moving tons of earth and creating hills, vales and lakes in an age before tractors or JCBs. The focus is on famous ‘Capability’ Brown landscapes in the Midlands region, including CroomeCharlecote ParkWeston Park, Coombe Abbey and of course Compton Verney itself. It will showcase the very latest research on the design and use of Georgian landscapes with paintings, maps, accounts, historic guns, manuals and specially-commissioned photography.

The exhibition is curated by Compton Verney’s Director, Georgian expert Dr Steven Parissien, and Professor Tim Mowl, Director of the Landscape and Garden History Centre at the University of Bristol and founding author of Redcliffe Press’s county guides to the Historic Gardens of Britain.

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