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 :. | Pompeian Lady | Mischief | A Classical Beauty | A Priestess | The Jewel Casket |
Related Artists:Sergei Sudeikin
Well-known Russian and emigre Symbolist painter, graphic artist, theater and film designer,1882-1946
was a Russian artist and set-designer associated with the Ballets Russes and the Metropolitan Opera. Having been banned from the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture for his "obscene drawings", Sudeikin joined the Mir Iskusstva movement. His close friends included the poet Mikhail Kuzmin and the impresario Serge Diaghilev, at whose invitation he came to Paris in 1906 for the Salon d'Automne Exhibition, where his work was first shown abroad. In 1907-1918, he was married to actress Olga Glebova (1885-1945), one of the famed beauties of St Petersburg and the closest friend of Anna Akhmatova. Glebova-Sudeikina is the principal character and addressee of Akhmatova's longest work, "The Poem Without Hero" (1940-65). Sudeikin designed the sets and costumes for Diaghilev's production of La trag??die de Salome by Florent Schmitt in 1913, and assisted in the execution of Nicholas Roerich's designs for Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring the same year. By the time of the October Revolution Sudeikin was among the foremost theatrical designers in Russia.Willim Henry Fox Talbot
Hipolito Boaventura Caron
painted Arredores de Paris in 1887