(b Dublin, c. 1710; d Chester, after 1756). Irish mezzotint engraver, active also in England. He learnt the technique of mezzotint engraving in London and on his return to Dublin opened a workshop with Andrew Miller (d 1763). Their workshop became the training ground for a group of Irish engravers who moved to London, where they influenced the development of mezzotints of Old Master and contemporary paintings. On returning to London in 1746 Brooks became a partner of the enamelling factory at York House, Battersea, where he worked until it closed in 1756; he claimed (possibly justly) to have invented the transfer-printing process, and attempted (unsuccessfully) to patent it for enamels and ceramics in Birmingham (1751), where he had a workshop, and London (1754 and 1755).
From The Grove Encyclopedia of Decorative Arts in Oxford Reference.
Subjects: Decorative Arts, Furniture, and Industrial Design.