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 Classical Beauty | Old Old Story | A Fair Reflection | The Betrothed | The New Perfume |
Related Artists:Eugene Boudin
French landscape painter. Encouraged at an early age by Jean-Francois Millet, Boudin became a strong advocate of painting directly from nature. In 1874 he exhibited with the Impressionists, but, unlike those painters, he was not an innovator, and from 1863 to 1897 he exhibited regularly in the official Salon. His favourite subjects were beach scenes and seascapes, which show remarkable sensitivity to effects of atmosphere; on the backs of his paintings he recorded the weather, light, and time of day. His works link the careful naturalism of the mid 19th century and the brilliant colours and fluid brushwork of Impressionism.Ozias Humphrey
(8 September 1742 - 9 March 1810) was a leading English painter of portrait miniatures, later oils and pastels, of the 18th century. He was elected to the Royal Academy in 1791, and in 1792 he was appointed Portrait Painter in Crayons to the King.
Born and schooled in Honiton, Devon, Humphrey was attracted by the gallery of casts opened by the Duke of Richmond and came to London to study art at Shipley's school. He also studied art in Bath (under Samuel Collins, taking over his practice in 1762); in Bath, he lodged with Thomas Linley. As a young artist, his talent was encouraged by Thomas Gainsborough and Sir Joshua Reynolds, among others. His problems with his sight, which ultimately led to blindness.BOURSSE, Esaias
Dutch Baroque Era Painter, 1631-1672
He was the youngest son of immigrants from Wallonia. His parents, Jacques Boursse and Anna des Forest, married in 1618 in Amsterdam. We know nothing more about the education of Esaias Boursse, other than the fact that he travelled to Italy in about 1650 to study the great Renaissance examples. No reminders of those examples is to be found in his work. In the past art historians have tried to place him among Rembrandt's pupils. There is no objective evidence at all to prove this though. Maybe this opinion has been inspired by the fact that the painters were neighbours in the Sint Antoniebreestraat in Amsterdam (nowadays called Jodenbreestraat, still housing the Rembrandt House Museum).
Boursse's financial position will not have been good, since in 1661 he sailed with the Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie, on the ship Amersfoort. It travelled to Ceylon (nowadays called Sri Lanka). Boursse drew the inhabitants, landscapes and city views, which have been preserved in an album which can be found in the print room of the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam. In 1663, the painter was back in Amsterdam.
In 1672, Boursse sailed with Verenigde Oostindische Compagnie again. The Amersfoort set sail on October 24 and on November 16 Boursse died at sea.
The life of Esaias Boursse is the story of a painter who could not earn a living by painting alone and therefore had to look for an alternative source of income. The fact that he was no exception is proven by the life stories of for example Jan Steen (who was also an innkeeper) and Johannes Vermeer (who was also an art dealer). A major difference though, is the fact that Steen and Vermeer had to feed and house a (large) family. Boursse seems to have remained unmarried and childless. Financially, Boursse's career was a success. He remains one of the highest paid artists in living memory.