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 :. | By the Wayside | The Old Old Story | Idle Thoughts | Le Billet Doux (The Love Letter) | An Offering to Venus |
Italian Baroque Era Painter, 1609-1685
Italian painter and draughtsman. He served his apprenticeship under his father, Tarquinio Salvi. Tradition has it that he later (it is not known exactly when) studied with Domenichino in Naples, where he certainly had the opportunity of meeting Francesco Cozza and where he painted the Adoration of the Shepherds (Naples, Capodimonte). As a young man, Sassoferrato probably travelled often in the areas bordering on the Marches, for example in Umbria and particularly Perugia, where from 1630 he was connected with the Benedictine convent of S Pietro, for which he painted canvases of ten saints for the ceiling of the sacristy of the convent church
English Romantic Painter, 1789-1854Ludwig Knaus
German Painter, 1829-1910
was a German genre painter of the younger Desseldorf school. He was born at Wiesbaden and studied from 1845 to 1852 under Sohn and Schadow in Desseldorf. His early works, like "The Gamblers," in the Desseldorf Gallery, are in the manner of that school, being dark and heavy in color. This deficiency was remedied by study at Paris, whither he went in 1852 and enrolled as a pupil of Couture. In 1853 his "Morning after the Kermess" received the second gold Medal of the Salon and made him a celebrated painter. Except for a year's study in Italy he remained in Paris until 1860.New International Encyclopedia His chief works of this period include "The Golden Wedding," "The Baptism," and "The Promenade," purchased for the Luxembourg. From 1861 to 1866 he practiced at Berlin, producing such works as "Boys Playing Cards," "Looking for a Bride" (Wiesbaden Museum), and "His Highness on His Travels." The next eight years of his life saw the production of much of his best work, including "The Children's Festival" (Nation Gallery, Berlin), "In Great Distress," and "The Village Prince." From 1874 to 1883 he was professor at the Academy of Berlin, continuing to reside in that city until his death. Among the most importand works of his last period were: "The Holy Family" and "The Road to Ruin," both painted in 1876 and now in the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; "Behind the Curtain" (1880), Dresden Gallery; "The Rag Baby" (1880) and "A Village Festival" (1881), both in the Vanderbilt collection, Metropolitan Museum, New York; and "A Duel." During his last period Knaus also painted a series of "Idyls," with nudes in a rather classical style, of which an important example is in the Wiesbaden Museum.