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
Autumn
Autumn, 1900
ID: 67868

John William Godward Autumn
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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 :. | An Offering to Venus | Le Billet Doux (The Love Letter) | Idle Thoughts | Idleness | Le Billet Doux |
Related Artists:
GENTILESCHI, Artemisia
Italian Baroque Era Painter, 1593-1652 Tuscan painter, daughter and pupil of Orazio Gentileschi, b. Rome. She studied under Agostino Tassi, her father's collaborator, who was convicted of raping the teen-age Artemisia in 1612. Over the years, she has been portrayed as a strumpet, a feminist victim or heroine, and an independent woman of her era and her life has been fictionalized in several novels and plays. In purely artistic terms, she achieved renown for her spirited execution and admirable use of chiaroscuro in the style of Caravaggio, and during her life she achieved both success and fame. In 1616 she became the first woman admitted to the Academy of Design in Florence. About 1638 she visited England, where she was in great demand as a portraitist. Among her works are Judith and Holofernes (Uffizi);
Juan Antonio Escalante
Spanish Baroque Era Painter, 1633-1670 Spanish painter. He was an outstanding figure in decorative Baroque art. When quite young he moved from Andalusia to Madrid, where he apparently worked with and was influenced by Francisco Rizi. His artistic development reveals an increasing admiration for Veronese, Tintoretto and Titian, although elements of the style of Alonso Cano persist. Among his first works is Andromeda and the Dragon (c. 1659; Madrid, Prado), whose mannerist elements derive from an engraving of the subject by Agostino Carracci. The two brilliant works St Catherine of Alexandria (Madrid, Las Maravillas) and Road to Calvary (Madrid, Real Acad. S Fernando), signed and dated 1660, are executed with an agile and self-assured technique, in colours that stem from Venetian painting. Like other Spanish painters of the period, he painted numerous versions of the Immaculate Conception (e.g. 1660, Colegio de Villafranca de los Barros; 1663, Budapest, Mus. F.A.; c. 1666, Benedictine monastery of Lumbier, Navarre), which are more Baroque in style and expression than those of Jose Antolenez and Mateo Cerezo. In these the faces, surrounded by luxuriant hair, is expressed an innocent candour that contrasts with the turbulent appearance of the cherubs. Also characteristic of his style are the versions of the Annunciation (1653; New York, Hisp. Soc. America Mus; B?ziers, Mus. B.-A.). He treated the theme of St Joseph with great nobility, as in the Dream of St Joseph (1666; New York, Chrysler Col.). His deep lyrical feelings pervade the various paintings of the Infant St John (Madrid, Prado).
Henry Gastineau
1791-1876






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