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 :. | Sweet Dreams | In the Tepidarium | The Mirror | Campaspe | Youth and Time |
Related Artists:Joan de Joanes
French Painter, 1821-1911
was a French painter in the style of the Barbizon School. Born Felix-Francois Georges Philibert Ziem in Beaune in the Côte d'Or departement of the Burgundy region of France, his mother was a native of Burgundy who married a Croatian immigrant. Originally, Ziem planned to be an architect and studied at the School of Architecture in Dijon, and for a time worked as an architect. Painting developed from a hobby to a career following an 1841 visit to Italy where he fell in love with the city of Venice, a place that would become the source for many of his works. Apart from Venetian scenes, he also painted many still lifes, portraits and landscapes from a variety of places including Constantinople, Martigues, Cagnes-sur-Mer and his native Burgundy. Ziem's works were first exhibited in 1849 at the Paris Salon and remained a regular exhibitor there for many years. Part of the Barbizon school, he also traveled extensively throughout Europe and in 1860 moved to Montmartre, the artistic quarter of the city of Paris. Financially successful, he was known to assist struggling young artists. In 1857, the government of France recognized his contribution to the art world by making him a Chevalier of the Legion of Honor. Jacobus Mancadan
(c. 1602, Minnertsga - 4 October 1680, Tjerkgaast) was a Dutch Golden Age painter mostly known for his pastoral landscapes.