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 :. | At the Garden Shrine, Pompeii | A Classical Beauty | Campaspe | Classical Beauty | At the Thermae |
Related Artists:CAPELLE, Jan van de
Dutch Baroque Era Painter, ca.1624-1679Stefano della Bella
Italian Baroque Era Printmaker, 1610-1664,was an Italian printmaker known for etchings of many subjects, including military ones. He was born at Florence, and apprenticed initially to a goldsmith, but became an engraver working under Orazio Vanni and then Cesare Dandini. He studied etching under Remigio Cantagallina, who had also been the instructor of Jacques Callot, who had lived in Florence 1612-1621, and whose prints imparted a strong influence to printmakers. The patronage of Don Lorenzo de Medici enabled della Bella to study for three years in Rome. In Rome, he created a then admired print of the cavalcade celebrating the entry of the Polish ambassador into Rome in 1633. He also created a number of prints of views of Rome. In 1642 he went to Paris, introduced by the Tuscan ambassador, Alessandro del Nero, and where he resided for seven years. Cardinal Richelieu engaged him to go to Arras and make drawings of the siege and taking of that town by the royal army. After residing a considerable time at Paris he returned to Florence, where he obtained a pension from the grand duke, whose son, Cosimo de Medici, he instructed in drawing. His productions were very numerous, amounting to over 1000 separate pieces. He is known to have illustrated some discoveries for Galileo. See entry for Hansken for his etching of the famous elephant after death. Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Stefano della Bella Luis Egidio Melendez
(Naples, 1716-Madrid, 1780) was a Spanish painter. Although he received little acclaim during his lifetime and died in poverty, Melendez is recognized today as the greatest Spanish still-life painter of the 18th century. His mastery of composition and light, and his remarkable ability to convey the volume and texture of individual objects enabled him to transform the most mundane of kitchen fare into powerful images.
Luis Egidio Melendez de Rivera Durazo y Santo Padre was born in Naples in 1716. His father, Francisco Melendez de Rivera Diaz (1682- after 1758), was a miniaturist painter from Oviedo who had moved to Madrid with his older brother, the portrait painter Miguel Jacinto Melendez (1679-1734) in pursuit of artistic instruction. Whereas Miguel remained in Madrid to study and became a painter in the court of Philip V, Francisco left for Italy in 1699 to seek greater artistic exposure. Francisco took a special interest in visiting the Italian academies and settled in Naples where he married Maria Josefa Durazo y Santo Padre Barrille.Luis was a year old when his father, who had been a soldier in a Spanish garrison and lived abroad for almost two decades, returned to Madrid with the family. Luis Egidio, his brother Jose Agusten, and Ana, one of his sisters, began their careers under the tutelage of their father, who was appointed the King's Painter of Miniatures in 1725.After several years, in his words: painting royal portraits in jewels and bracelets to serve as gifts for envoys and ambassadors, he entered the workshop of Louis Michel van Loo (1707-1771), a Frenchman who had been made royal painter of Philip V of Spain. Between 1737 to 1742, Melendez worked as a part of a team of artist dedicated to copying van Loo's prototypes of royal portraits for the domestic and overseas market, but at least he had a foothold in the palace. He had his artistic sights on a distinguished career as a court painter.