1827 - 1856

John Middleton

John Middleton was born at Norwich on 9 January 1827 and baptised at St Stephen's Church, Norwich on 14 January 1827, son of John Middleton (c1787-6 April 1848), a plumber, glazier, painter, and glass stainer, and his wife Ann née Bayfield (1801-1 January 1830). Young John was educated at Norwich Grammar School and was a pupil of Norwich School artist, John Berney Ladbrooke, his friend Thomas Lound also had a major influence on his work. Middleton had instruction from Henry Bright who had a further major influence in Middleton’s style, such that their works are often difficult to tell apart. In 1847 he exhibited for the first time at the Royal Academy and where he exhibited until 1855. He also exhibited at the British Institution and the Suffolk Fine Arts Association at Ipswich in 1850, four works 'Clearing the Forest', 'Landscape-Evening', 'The Marsh Lane-A Passing Shower' and 'Forest Scene' and he also showed at the Norwich and Eastern Counties Industrial Exhibition in 1867. On the death of his father at Norwich on 6 April 1848, aged 61, he announced on 29 April that he was to continue his late father's 'plate, crown and horticultural glass...and oil and colour warehouse' business at 63 St Stephen’s Street, Norwich but continued with his painting, exhibiting at the Norwich & Norfolk Association for the Encouragement of the Fine Arts in 1848 'Cantley Beck, near Ketteringham'. From about 1852 he lived at Surrey Street, Norwich but travelled around the country and in 1853 visited Scotland. Middleton was a committee member of the Norwich Photographic Society and was befriended by a wealthy landowner, William Bolding, living at Weybourne in North Norfolk, eliciting his patronage, they were certainly close and sketched together. Middleton had a liking for river scenes, rocks and dry riverbeds and his painterly eye can be seen at work in the few of his photographs which have survived. Bolding, on the other hand, devoted a great deal of time to photography and produced some exceptionally fine portraits of his estate workers and family. During a visit to north Wales circa 1850, Middleton took photographs, and he seems not to have made any paintings resulting from this visit. John Middleton's health was never good, and he died of consumption at Surrey Street, Norwich on 11 November 1856, at the early age of 29.

Royal Academy Exhibits
from 1 Terrace, Kensington
1847 137 Autumn
         391 The Field Barn
         454 'see the fading in woods'
1848 638 The Beech Forest, Evening
from 63 Surrey Street, Norwich
1849 24 Avenue of Limes at Hatfield
1850 499 Clearing the Wood, early Spring
from Surrey Street, Norwich
1851 239 Clovelly, on the Coast of Devonshire
         687 A Fine Day in February
1852 59 The Stream in June
         1279 A Study. In March on the Norfok Coast
1853 91 Felled Timber, Early Spring
1854 226 A Stream in Arran
1855 320 Looking down the Stream

Works by This Artist