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 Old, Old Story | A Quiet Pet detail | Le Billet Doux (The Love Letter) | The Peacock Fan | The Peacock Fan |
Related Artists:Frank Buscher
Frank Buscher Locations TIEPOLO, Giovanni Domenico
Italian painter, Venetian school (b. 1727, Venezia, d.
Italian painter and printmaker. He was apprenticed to his father, Giovanni Battista Tiepolo, in Venice in the early 1740s and worked with him in Madrid from 1762 until the elder's death in 1770. His most notable early works are the chinoiserie decorations of the Villa Valmarana in Vicenza (1757). Back in Venice, he executed several frescoes and paintings of scenes from the commedia dell'arte. A talented genre painter and caricaturist, he was famous for his many engravings and etchings after his own and his father's designs.
Period: Post-Romantic (1870-1909)
Born: June 15, 1843 in Bergen, Norway
Died: September 04, 1907 in Bergen, Norway
Genres: Chamber Music, Concerto, Keyboard Music, Miscellaneous Music, Orchestral Music, Vocal Music