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 :. | On the Balcony | A Pompeian Lady | A Souvenir | Dolce far Niente | The Ring by John William Godward |
Related Artists:Polk, Charles Peale
American painter. Orphaned as a child, he was raised in Philadelphia, PA, by his uncle, Charles Willson Peale, who taught him to paint. In 1791 Polk moved to Baltimore, MD, where he achieved limited success as a portrait painter. Seeking commissions, he moved to Frederick, MD, in 1796. Over the next five years during travels as an itinerant limner through western Maryland and Virginia he reached his mature style. Abandoning his academic training, Polk developed a distinctive but naive artistic vocabulary with a heightened palette, electric highlights and an exaggerated attenuation of the human form. The portraits of Isaac Hite and his wife Eleanor Madison Hite, as well as James Madison sr and Eleanor Conway Madison (all Middletown, VA, Belle Grove), were commissioned in 1799 and are accepted as his masterpieces. Isaac Hite also commissioned the quintessentially 'republican' portrait of Thomas Jefferson (New York, Victor Spark priv. col.), executed at Monticello in 1799. In 1801 Polk moved to Washington, DC, working as a clerk in the Treasury. During the next 16 years he painted few portraits in oilJennie A. Brownscombe
Jennie Augusta Brownscombe
She has been called "a kind of Norman Rockwell of her era." In fact, the skillful drawing, attention to detail, and nostalgic moods of her paintings make the comparison between Jennie Augusta Brownscombe and the popular American illustrator seem quite apt.
Brownscombe's early life sounds like the story behind one of her own pictures. Born in a log cabin in rural northeastern Pennsylvania, she was the only child of William Brownscombe, an English-born farmer, and Elvira Kennedy, a direct descendant of a Mayflower passenger, who encouraged her young daughter to write poetry and draw. Brownscombe won her first awards as a high school student, exhibiting her work at the Wayne County Fair. When her father died in 1868, Brownscombe began supporting herself through teaching, creating book and magazine illustrations, and selling the rights to reproduce her watercolor and oil paintings as inexpensive prints, Christmas cards, and calendars. More than 100 of Brownscombe's works were distributed this way, spreading her images into homes throughout the nation.Ralph Barton
American Artist, 1891-1931
American Artist, 1891-1931,1921 Vanity Fair caricature; use cursor to identify figuresBarton's first caricature was of Thomas Hart Benton; his last, of Charlie Chaplin. In between he knew everyone and drew everyone in the social and culture scene of New York. Some of his most famous works were group drawings, and perhaps the most noted was a stage curtain created for a 1922 revue, depicting an "audience" of 139 faces looking back at the real theater-goers. "The effect was electrifying, and the applause was great," said another caricaturist of the era, Aline Fruhauf. He also directed a short film, Camille, described by an IMDB contributor as a "home movie version" of the Dumas novel with a cast of his many actor, artist, and other celebrity friends.This movie was made available as a bonus in a 2003 release of Chaplin's A Woman of Paris. At the height of his popularity, Barton enjoyed not only the acquaintance of the famous, but a solid and impressive income. All of this concealed a terribly unhappy life. He was beset by manic-depressive disorder, and each of his four marriages ended in divorce. A self-portrait, painted around 1925 and modeled on an el Greco.