"In an impressive and gorgeous volume, CAPABILITY BROWN: Designing the English Landscape (Rizzoli, $65), the renowned garden historian John Phibbs argues that Brown created a great art form that, “at its best, was consciously intended to go unnoticed.” It’s no surprise, then, that he became known as 'the Shakespeare of Gardening.'"
—The New York Times
". . .the gardens of Blenheim and Chatsworth come to life in Capability Brown: Designing the English Landscape (Rizzoli)."
"Fascinating reproductions of rarely seen archival drawings of Brown’s landscape plans shed light on Brown’s thinking and designs, enhancing the book. In one case there is a photograph of a bridge accompanied by the original design drawing of the bridge done by James Paine. Seeing the two side by side is a treat. Accompanying the essays are sumptuous photographs. Joe Cornish is the excellent principal photographer, but the book includes the work of fine other fine photographers, including Andrew Lawson. These images celebrate the soft English light while capturing the natural, parkland beauty of Brown’s designs. The double-page spreads in particular have a painterly feel, evoking the work of 17th century romantic landscape painters such Claude Lorrain and Nicolas Poussin. Some have an epic quality with dramatic, lowering, thunder-cloud–filled skies, others feature the pale blue skies of a pretty English summer day. The photographs are a fitting tribute to the man who gardened on a grand scale. Phipps writes that Capability Brown, “liked to call himself a ‘place-maker,’ but was more often described as a magician. That sense of magic and mystery persists as we try to understand Brown today.” This book certainly captures the magic."
—New York Journal of Books
"In word and image, this book matches Brown’s achievement. It should inspire every landscape designer and encourage the rest of us to hop on the next plane to Britain."
"There’s the new ‘Capability Brown’ garden book from Rizzoli, which is fantastic."
"Praised for his organic gardens and parklands, British landscape designer Capability Brown takes top billing in this eponymous hardcover by historian John Phibbs. The text, published to commemorate Brown’s 300th birthday, illuminates 15 of his grandest designs through vivid photography and rare archival drawings."
—Boston Home Magazine