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 Old Old Story | A Quiet Pet detail | In the Tepidarium | Erato at Her Lyre | The New Perfume |
Related Artists:MASTER of Female Half-length
Dutch painter (active 1530-1540)Tranquillo Cremona
Italian Painter , 1837-1878
Italian painter. The son of an Austrian government official, Cremona began his artistic education in 1849 at the art school in Pavia, where he encountered three Lombard artists who were an important influence on his early studies: Giacomo Tr?court (1812-82), head of the school; Giovanni Carnevali, Tr?court's friend and a frequent visitor to Pavia; and Federico Faruffini, also a student at Pavia. All three were interpreters of the curiously soft and subtle form of Romanticism, derived from Andrea Appiani, that was to be found in this specific form only in Italy. In 1852 Cremona moved to Venice, where he enrolled at the Accademia. His teachers, who included Ludovico Lipparini (1800-56), Michelangelo Grigoletti (1801-70) and Antonio Zona (1814-92), were well versed in the more academic form of Romanticism expressed by Francesco Hayez, although in Zona the rather rigid, academic linearity was attenuated by a softer sense of form and colour. The Venetian Old Masters were a greater influence on Cremona's ultimate use of colour than was his academy training. In 1859, to avoid military service with the Austrian Army, Cremona moved to Piedmont. Charles Christian Nahl and august wenderoth
German-born American Painter, 1818-1878