John William Godward
Godward was a Victorian Neo-classicist, and therefore a follower in theory of Frederic Leighton. However, he is more closely allied stylistically to Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, with whom he shared a penchant for the rendering of Classical architecture, in particular, static landscape features constructed from marble.
The vast majority of Godward's extant images feature women in Classical dress, posed against these landscape features, though there are some semi-nude and fully nude figures included in his oeuvre (a notable example being In The Tepidarium (1913), a title shared with a controversial Alma-Tadema painting of the same subject that resides in the Lady Lever Art Gallery). The titles reflect Godward's source of inspiration: Classical civilisation, most notably that of Ancient Rome (again a subject binding Godward closely to Alma-Tadema artistically), though Ancient Greece sometimes features, thus providing artistic ties, albeit of a more limited extent, with Leighton.
Given that Classical scholarship was more widespread among the potential audience for his paintings during his lifetime than in the present day, meticulous research of detail was important in order to attain a standing as an artist in this genre. Alma-Tadema was, as well as a painter, an archaeologist who attended historical sites and collected artefacts that were later used in his paintings: Godward, too, studied such details as architecture and dress, in order to ensure that his works bore the stamp of authenticity. In addition, Godward painstakingly and meticulously rendered those other important features in his paintings, animal skins (the paintings Noon Day Rest (1910) and A Cool Retreat (1910) contain superb examples of such rendition) and wild flowers (Nerissa (1906), illustrated above, and Summer Flowers (1903) are again excellent examples of this).
The appearance of beautiful women in studied poses in so many of Godward's canvases causes many newcomers to his works to categorise him mistakenly as being Pre-Raphaelite, particularly as his palette is often a vibrantly colourful one. However, the choice of subject matter (ancient civilisation versus, for example, Arthurian legend) is more properly that of the Victorian Neoclassicist: however, it is appropriate to comment that in common with numerous painters contemporary with him, Godward was a 'High Victorian Dreamer', producing beautiful images of a world which, it must be said, was idealised and romanticised, and which in the case of both Godward and Alma-Tadema came to be criticised as a world-view of 'Victorians in togas'. Related Paintings of John William Godward :. | The Ring | Flabellifera | He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not | Endymion | Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder |
Related Artists:Jan provoost
Dutch, born circa 1465-1529,South Netherlandish painter. He probably came into contact with Simon Marmion, the renowned painter and book illuminator from Valenciennes, via Jacquemart Pilavaine, a publisher and illuminator in his native Bergen. Provoost married Marmion's widow, Jeanne de Quaroube, before 1491, and it is thus assumed that Marmion was his teacher. In 1493 Provoost moved to Antwerp, a promising town for artists, where he registered as a master in the Guild of St Luke, but in 1494 he travelled to Bruges. He became a citizen there and soon played an important part in the painters' guild. In 1506 Maximiliaen Frans (1490-1547) was his pupil. Provoost received commissions for decorative work from the town council and church authorities in 1509, 1513 and 1520, the year of the Triumphal Entry of Charles V into Bruges, for which he worked on the decorations. He returned to Antwerp the same year to meet Albrecht Derer, who may have drawn his portrait. Derer visited Bruges in April 1521 and was Provoost's guest. Of Jan Provoost's children, Adriaen Provoost (b 1508) became a painter and Thomas Provoost a glassmaker, both active in Bruges. Jan Provoost's time as a pupil in a northern French miniaturist's workshop was of decisive influence on his later oeuvre. His work radiates assurance, with its precise drawing, restrained expression and airy landscapes, and he was successful in Bruges, where there was little competition after Hans Memling's death in 1494. John Leslie Breck
1860-1899Giovanni di Francesco
Italian Early Renaissance Painter, 1412-1459