John George Brown parents apprenticed him to the profession of glass worker at fourteen years old to discourage him from pursuing his painting ambitions. He studied evenings at the School of Design in Newcastle-on-Tyne while working as a glass cutter between 1849 and 1852 and evenings at the Trustees Academy in Edinburgh while working at another firm. In 1853 John George Brown sailed to New York City and studied with Thomas Seir Cummings at the National Academy of Design where he was elected a National Academician in 1861.
Around 1855, John George Brown worked for the proprietor of the Brooklyn Glass Company, and later he married his daughter. His father-in-law encouraged his artistic abilities, supporting him, letting Brown pursue painting full-time.
The Passing Show and Street Boys at Play are good examples of his popular talent. Brown's art is best portrayed as British genre paintings adjusted with American subjects. Essentially literary, Brown's depictions are executed with exact detail, but poor in color, and more popular with the general public than with art connoisseurs.
Brown was attempting to capture the spirit of the street kids as people who "pull themselves up by their bootstraps." Many years later, Brown claimed that most of the street children he painted had grown to become successful businessmen.
John George Brown was one of the most successful genre painters of the late nineteenth century. His paintings of cheery street urchins and shoeshine boys were quite popular with wealthy collectors. Be that as it may, Brown distorted his subjects as upbeat and healthy with a touch of grime for cosmetics. These scenes were beneath his creative capacity, yet Brown did not have any desire to cause social alarm among patrons. The royalties earned from one lithograph was $25,000 (equal to $400,000 now). Brown's financial success allowed for him to paint country landscape paintings for pleasure. From 1858 until 1900 John George Brown exhibited many of his paintings at the National Academy of Design, where he also taught for many years and between 1899 to 1904 he was the Academy's vice-president.
Art Movement: Realism.
He Traveled To USA.
Artist's Biography compiled by Albert L. Mansour at The World's Artist, with text adapted from Wikipedia.