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 :. | He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not | The Muse Erato at Her Lyre | A Classical Beauty | Campaspe | The Peacock Fan |
Related Artists:Gottfried Trimborn
painted Rheinfahre in 1920Kuzma Petrov-Vodkin
Russian Painter, 1878-1939
Russian painter. He began his studies in the drawing and painting classes of F. Burov (1843-95) in Samara (1893-5), and he attended Baron Stieglitz's school in St Petersburg from 1895 to 1897. He studied under Abram Arkhipov, Nikolay Kasatkin and Valentin Serov at the Moscow School of Painting, Sculpture and Architecture from 1897 to 1905 and at Anton Azb?'s school in Munich (1901). After working in various private studios in Paris between 1905 and 1908, he travelled to Constantinople (now Istanbul), Greece and Italy in 1905 and to Algiers in 1906. On his return to Russia, he held an exhibition in the editorial offices of the magazine Apollon in St Petersburg (1909). From 1911 to 1924 he exhibited with the WORLD OF ART group and from 1925 to 1928 with the FOUR ARTS SOCIETY OF ARTISTS. From the early 1910s Petrov-Vodkin's work was influential in the artistic life of St Petersburg. He attempted to reconcile classical and modern trends. His style was formed under a wide range of influences, often seemingly incompatible: 19th-century Russian painters such as Aleksey Venetsianov, Orsi, Lelio
Italian, approx. 1508-87
.Italian painter and draughtsman. A prominent Emilian artist of the mid-16th century, he was influenced by Correggio as well as by the late Mannerist style of Giulio Romano. His large-scale works seem to have been mainly secular decorations, notably illusionistic fa?ades, of which only fragments are extant. Their energy and expressiveness are apparent, however, in the surviving paintings of smaller dimensions. Orsi's sole documented architectural work is the Collegiata di S Stefano, Novellara