John William Godward
John William Godward's
Oil Paintings

John William Godward Museum
9 August 1861-13 December 1922, was an English painter.

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John William Godward
A Grecian Lovely
1909(1909) Oil on canvas 20 X 15 7/8 inches (50.8 X 40.6 cm)
ID: 68007

John William Godward A Grecian Lovely
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John William Godward A Grecian Lovely


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John William Godward

English 1861-1922 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 :. | A Souvenir | Absence Makes the Heart Grow Fonder | At the Garden Shrine, Pompeii | Venus at the Bath | Idle Thoughts |
Related Artists:
Johann Geyer
painted Columbus and the Egg in 1847 1807-1875
Campin, Robert, Follower of
Italian, 1400s
Caspar Wolf
Caspar Wolf (Muri, Aargau, 3 May 1735 - Heidelberg, 6 October 1783) was a Swiss painter, known mostly for his dramatic paintings of Alps. He was strongly influenced by Albrecht von Hallers poem on the Alps, and the Sturm und Drang movement. After 1773 Wolf mostly painted glaciers, caves, waterfalls and gorges. Wolf was the son of a furniture maker, who was banned from his city. Wolf was trained in Konstanz, between 1753 and 1759 he worked in Augsburg, Munich, Passau as a decoration painter. Not being able to sell his work he went disappointed back to his home town. For Horben Castle he painted by hand the wallpaper on the first floor. In 1768 Wolf lived in Basel. From 1769 till 1771 he stayed in Paris and worked with Philip James de Loutherbourg. In 1774 he moved to Bern. Wolf made a deal with the local publisher Abraham Wagner who had a geological interest, to deliver 200 paintings. He travelled with Wagner or a minister Jakob Samuel Wyttenbach in Berner Oberland and Wallis. From 1780-1781 he was working in Spa, Cologne, Aix-la-Chapelle and Desseldorf. He died in poor circumstances in a hospital. In 1779 his prints were exposed were Bern but the selling of the book became a failure. Wagner became help from a Swiss army officer in Dutch service and in 1785 30 aquatints were published in Amsterdam. Till 1948 90 of these aquatints were exposed in Keukenhof Castle, but sold. Today these works can be seen in the Kunsthaus in Aarau. His son Theodor Wolf (1770 - 1818) was a still life painter.






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