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 :. | Godward Leaning on the Balcony | At the Garden Shrine, Pompeii | Study of Campaspe | Idle Thoughts | Summer Flowers |
Related Artists:Luc - Olivier Merson
French, 1846 - 1920Zygmunt Waliszewski
(1897-1936) was a Polish painter, a member of the Kapist movement.
Waliszewski was born in Saint Petersburg to the Polish family of an engineer. In 1907 his parents moved to Tbilisi where Waliszewski spent his childhood. In Tbilisi began his studies at a prestigious art school. In 1908 he had his first exhibition and participated in the life of artistic avant-garde. During World War I he fought with the Russian army, returning to Tbilisi in 1917. He visited Moscow several times and became inspired by the Russian Futurists. He, later, became a member of a Futurist group. In the early 1920s, he departed for Poland, and settled in Krakew. Between 1921 and 1924 he studied at Academy of Fine Arts in Krakew in the studios of Wojciech Weiss and Jezef Pankiewicz. In 1924 he went to Paris with his avante-garde group and continued his studies in painting there under the guidance of Pankiewicz. He was a participant in the Capists' plein-air painting workshops in Cagnes, Valence, Cap Martin, and Avignon. At the Louvre, he painted copies and travesties of the works of old masters like Titian, Veronese, Velezquez, Vermeer, Goya, and Delacroix. He was also fascinated by the art of Cezanne, van Gogh, and Matisse.
In 1931 he returned to Poland, residing in Warsaw, Krzeszowice, and Krakew. During this time Waliszewski designed scenery and posters, created book illustrations, drew and painted caricatures and grotesque scenes. In Krakew he befriended the Polish Formists. Waliszewski painted primarily portraits and figural compositions and landscapes of the rural countryside. He died suddenly in 1936.