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 :. | Study of Campaspe | Mischief | Chloris A Summer Rose | A Priestess | At the Garden Shrine, Pompeii |
Related Artists:Edward Middleton Manigault
(June 14, 1887 - August 31, 1922) was an American Modernist painter.
Manigault was born in London, Ontario on June 14, 1887. His parents were Americans originally from South Carolina.Encouraged in art from an early age, he was commissioned at the age of 18 the city of London to make renderings of public buildings for reproduction as postcards.Bertram Mackennal
1863 - 1931,Mackennal was born in Fitzroy a suburb of Melbourne to parents who were both of Scottish descent. His father, John Simpson Mackennal, who was also a sculptor, provided his early training which was followed by studies at the school of design at the Melbourne National Gallery which he attended from 1878 to 1882. Marshall Wood, the English sculptor, who visited Australia in 1880, strongly advised him to go abroad. He left for London in 1882 to study at the National Gallery Schools, and for a time shared a studio with Charles Douglas Richardson and Tom Roberts. In 1884 he visited Paris for further study and married a fellow student, Agnes Spooner. On returning to England he obtained a position at the Coalport china factory as a designer and modeller. In 1886 he won a competition for the sculptured reliefs on the front of Parliament House, Melbourne, and returned to Australia in 1887 to carry these out. While in Australia he obtained other commissions, including the figure over the doorway of Mercantile Chambers, Collins Street, Melbourne. He also met Sarah Bernhardt, who was on a professional visit to Australia, and strongly advised the young man to return to Paris, which he did in 1891. In 1893 he had his first success, when his full length figure "Circe", now at the National Gallery of Victoria, obtained a "mention" at the Salon and created a good deal of interest. It was exhibited later at the Royal Academy where it also aroused great interest, partly because of the prudery of the hanging committee which insisted that the base should be covered. Commissions began to flow in, among them being the figures "Oceana" and "Grief' for the Union Club, Sydney. Two Melbourne commissions brought him to Australia again in 1901, the memorial to Sir William John Clarke at the Treasury Gardens, Melbourne, and the sculptures for the Springthorpe Memorial in Kew. He returned to London, and among his works of this period were the fine pediment for the local government board office at Westminster, a Boer War memorial for Islington, and statues of Queen Victoria for Ballarat, Lahore, and Blackburn. In 1907 his marble group "The Earth and the Elements" was purchased for the National Gallery of British Art under the Chantry Bequest, and in 1908 his "Diana Wounded" was also bought for the nation. This dual success brought Mackennal into great prominence, and he was elected an associate of the Royal Academy in 1909. In the following year he designed the Coronation Medal for King George V and also won the important commission for the obverse design (the monarch's head) of the new coinage needed for the new reign from 1911. This is certainly his most enduring design. His initials, B.M., can be seen on the truncation of the King's neck on the obverse of all British coins of George V. His next important piece of work was the memorial to Gainsborough at Sudbury, which was followed by the memorial tomb of King Edward VII at St. George's Chapel, Windsor. He also did statues of King Edward VII for London, Melbourne, Calcutta and Adelaide. He was the first Australian artist to be knighted.He was created a Knight Commander of the Victorian Order in 1921, and was elected R.A. in 1922. Among his later works were the nude male figure for the Eton War Memorial, the war memorial to the members of both houses of parliament in London, the figures of the soldier and the sailor for the cenotaph in Martin Place, Sydney, the bronze statue of King George V at Old Parliament House, Canberra, and the head of "Victory", presented to the Commonwealth by the artist, also at Canberra. He completed the Desert Mounted Corps memorial at the Suez Canal from the designs of Charles Web Gilbert a little while before his death. He died suddenly at his house, Watcombe Hall, near Torquay, Carlton Alfred Smith,RI,RWS