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 Grecian Lovely | An Offering to Venus | Campaspe | Classical Beauty | Idle Thoughts |
Related Artists:Emil Nolde
German Expressionist Painter, 1867-1956.German painter, watercolourist and printmaker. He was one of the strongest and most independent of the German Expressionists. Nolde belonged to the Dresden-based group known as DIE BR?CKE from 1906 to 1907. Primarily a colourist, he is best known for his paintings in oil, his watercolours and his graphic work. His art was deeply influenced by the stark natural beauty of his north German homeland, and alongside numerous landscapes, seascapes and flower paintings, Nolde also produced works with religious and imaginary subjects. Georg Volmar
Swiss, 1770-1831Etienne Moreau-Nelaton
Adolphe Etienne Auguste Moreau-Nelaton (2 December 1859, Paris- 25 April 1927, Paris) was a French painter, art collector and art historian. His large collection is today held in its entirety by National French museums.
Moreau-Nelaton's family's art collecting began with his grandfather Adolphe Moreau (1800-59). As a stockbroker he possessed ample capital with which to buy the work of artists with whom he was personally acquainted, including Eugene Delacroix and Alexandre-Gabriel Decamps. Moreau-Nelaton's father, who was also named Adolphe Moureau (1827-82), was a high government official and led the railroad company Chemins de fer de l'Est. In 1856 he married the ceramic artist Camille Nelaton (1840-97), with whom he further expanded the family's collection.