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 Pompeian Garden | Youth and Time | The Muse Erato at Her Lyre | In the Tepidarium | Blossoming Red Almond |
Related Artists:Anne-Louis Girodet de Roussy-Trioson
(also given as Anne-Louis Girodet de Roucy-Triosson, Anne-Louis Girodet-Trioson) January 5, 1767 - December 9, 1824), was a French painter and pupil of Jacques-Louis David, who was part of the beginning of the Romantic movement by adding elements of eroticism through his paintings. Girodet is remembered for his precise and clear style and for his paintings of members of the Napoleonic family.
French, 1854-1925Pieter Coecke van Aelst
(August 14, 1502 - December 6, 1550) was a Flemish painter. He studied under Bernaert van Orley and later lived in Italy before entering the Antwerp Guild of painters in 1527. In 1533, he travelled to Constantinople for one year in a failed attempt to establish business connections for his tapestry works. Van Aelst established a studio in Brussels in 1544, where he created paintings and tapestries. His students include Gillis van Coninxloo, Willem Key, Hans Vredeman de Vries, Michiel Coxcie, and possibly Pieter Brueghel the Elder, who did eventually marry van Aelst's daughter, Mayken. His second wife, Mayken Verhulst, was an artist as well, and, according to Carel van Mander, the first teacher of her grandchildren, Pieter Brueghel the Younger and Jan Brueghel the Elder. He was also the uncle of Joachim Bueckelaer. Van Aelst's studio is also well known for its engraved works.
In particular, van Aelst is noted for his 1539 translation of Sebastiano Serlio's architectural treatise, Architettura, which is credited with having played a crucial role in spreading Renaissance ideas to the Low Countries and hastening the transition from the late Gothic style prevalent in the area at the time. He was in charge of the spectacular decorations for the 1549 Royal entry into Antwerp of Philip II of Spain, "the most famous entry of the century", according to Roy Strong.