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 :. | The Belvedere | A Souvenir | Endymion | The Ring | Study of Campaspe |
Related Artists:Kazimierz Alchimowicz
(1840 ?C 1916) was a Lithuanian-born Polish romantic painter.
Born in Dziembrow, Lithuania, Alchimowicz was banished to Siberia for six years for his participation in the January Uprising. After his return, he enrolled in a drawing class in Warsaw taught by Wojciech Gerson. The class had a great influence on his later artistic works. He later studied art in Munich, Germany and Paris, France. While staying in France, Alchimowicz was a craftsmen decorating porcelain and earthenware crafts. He settled permanently in Warsaw in 1880 to paint professionally. His artistic inspiration mainly came from patriotic topics and history. John Shackleton
was a British painter and draughtsman who produced history paintings and portraits. His parents and origins are unknown.
Shackleton painted several surviving portraits, for example of Henry Pelham (National Portrait Gallery), William Windham (1717 - 1761; now at Felbrigg Hall, Norfolk), and of John Bristowe, steward to the first duke of Newcastle (now in the Reitlinger Museum of Fine Art, Maidenhead).
From 1749 he was Principal Painter in Ordinary to George II and George III. He continued to be paid for portraits of the king and queen up even during 1765 - 6, when their official portraits were being done by Allan Ramsay. Several examples of his and his studio's output of royal portraits survive - one of George II dated 1755 is in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh; another of George II in Room 2 of the British Museum, London (commissioned by the museum in 1759 - the Museum also holds engravings after his paintings), along with two more of George II in the Royal Collection and others in Fishmongers' Hall, London, and Maidenhead Museum.