John William Godward

Biography

Raised in Wimbledon, England, Godward debuted at London’s Royal Academy exhibition in 1887. By the subsequent decade the burgeoning artist was on a steady ascent to artistic success. Having fell under the influence of British Neoclassical Revivalists Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, Lord Frederic Leighton, and Sir Edward John Poynter, Godward quickly adopted, if not rivaled, their style. He envisioned similar scenes of the ancient world, seamlessly blending antiquity and beauty in breathtaking compositions. The sensuality and mystery of Godward’s maidens, combined with his impressive antique backdrops, attracted fans across Europe and sent Godward on a rapid ascent to artistic stardom. In 1889 he was elected to the Royal Society of British Artists. Ten years later Godward debuted at the Parisian Salon of 1899, where again he was heaped with praise. In the early years of the 20th century, however, Godward was faced with the painful reality that the classical world he so loved was being overshadowed by modern art movements. He moved to Rome in 1912 to surround himself with the physical remnants of the classical world, and there he stayed for the major part of his remaining career.Godward's paintings have enjoyed a resurgence in the past few years and he is now the most celebrated and in-demand English artist on the market today.

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