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 :. | A Quiet Pet detail | Under the Blossom that Hangs on the Bough | Endymion | Drusilla | Summer Flowers |
Related Artists:Stefano della Bella
Italian Baroque Era Printmaker, 1610-1664,was an Italian printmaker known for etchings of many subjects, including military ones. He was born at Florence, and apprenticed initially to a goldsmith, but became an engraver working under Orazio Vanni and then Cesare Dandini. He studied etching under Remigio Cantagallina, who had also been the instructor of Jacques Callot, who had lived in Florence 1612-1621, and whose prints imparted a strong influence to printmakers. The patronage of Don Lorenzo de Medici enabled della Bella to study for three years in Rome. In Rome, he created a then admired print of the cavalcade celebrating the entry of the Polish ambassador into Rome in 1633. He also created a number of prints of views of Rome. In 1642 he went to Paris, introduced by the Tuscan ambassador, Alessandro del Nero, and where he resided for seven years. Cardinal Richelieu engaged him to go to Arras and make drawings of the siege and taking of that town by the royal army. After residing a considerable time at Paris he returned to Florence, where he obtained a pension from the grand duke, whose son, Cosimo de Medici, he instructed in drawing. His productions were very numerous, amounting to over 1000 separate pieces. He is known to have illustrated some discoveries for Galileo. See entry for Hansken for his etching of the famous elephant after death. Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Stefano della Bella Simon Dequoy
Simon Dequoy (1655-1727)
French , 1861-1836