new-york

Cecily Brown, Untitled (After von Bayros), ca. 1997–98, ballpoint pen and colored pencil on paper, 12 5/8 × 12 5/8".

Cecily Brown

Drawing Center

Cecily Brown, Untitled (After von Bayros), ca. 1997–98, ballpoint pen and colored pencil on paper, 12 5/8 × 12 5/8".

Cecily Brown’s exhibition at the Drawing Center, the first devoted exclusively to her works on paper, delivered everything we expect from the artist: sex, violence, prurient gestural marks, and bursts of garish color. Organized by Claire Gilman, the show included nearly eighty drawings, including works based on paintings by Bruegel, prints by Hogarth, photos by nineteenth-century pornographers, and even the cover of a Dover paperback of “copyright-free” animal figures. Brown created the works over twenty-some years using a variety of mediums (ink, colored pencil, watercolor, pastel) and sizes (from a standard letter sheet to a monumental page almost four by seven feet); they were presented here under a compelling unifying theme: rehearsal. Directing us as viewers to focus on Brown’s repeated motifs, this rubric (also the exhibition’s title) played on the traditional function of

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