Lucy Harwood: Bold Impressions

Exhibitions: FREE

(No booking required)

Lucy Harwood: Bold Impressions

Saturday 02 December 2023 - Sunday 14 April 2024


View Opening Times
Immerse yourself in the life and work of local artist Lucy Harwood (1893 – 1972).


Featuring over 100 bold and beautiful paintings – including landscapes, still life and portraiture – step into a world where colour and energy collide, as Harwood’s artworks command the space with their vibrancy and confidence.

Marking the first major exhibition of Lucy Harwood’s work since 1975, this exhibition offers a captivating exploration of the life and career of the artist, a dedicated Post-Impressionist painter whose work echoes the boldness of Van Gogh and Gauguin.

Artefacts including photos, clothing, and her passport from her time as a young art student will also feature in the show, along with stories from friends and neighbours, many of whom have loaned artworks to the exhibition,

As a child, Lucy had shown considerable talent as a pianist, but complications from an operation on her right arm left her partially paralysed on her right side. In place of the piano, Harwood turned to painting and enrolled at the Slade School of Fine Art in London.

In 1937, Harwood continued her studies at the East Anglian School of Painting and Drawing in Dedham, run by Cedric Morris and his partner Arthur Lett-Haines. Harwood remained with the school when it relocated to Benton End, on the outskirts of Hadleigh, Suffolk, in 1939.

Her relationship with Benton End continued for many years, where she mentored the younger students, including Maggi Hambling (b.1945).

The show encapsulates her independent artistic journey, showcasing her legacy in the heart of the East Anglian School of Painting and Drawing, where her talent truly thrived.


Bold Impressions is co-curated by acclaimed arts journalist and biographer of Cedric Morris and Arthur Lett Haine, Hugh St Clair.

“Lucy Harwood was a key part of The East Anglian School and also a dedicated and serious artist who found her own inimitable colourful style and striking technique. The show aims to bring to life her independent spirit and courage through her diaries that will be quoted from.

There will also be a display of some of her favourite things that formed the inspiration for her Still Life paintings.

Visitors will also be able to interpret some of the local landscapes she depicted that can be shown alongside her originals.” – Hugh St Clair.


‘Bold Impressions’ is the third in Firstsite’s ongoing series of exhibitions focusing on the legacy of The East Anglian School of Painting and Drawing and its students. It follows Firstsite’s critically acclaimed exhibitions ‘Denis Wirth-Miller: Landscapes and Beasts’ (2022-23) and ‘Life with Art’ (2021-22).


Firstsite is delighted to thank new exhibition supporters, Trevor Fenwick, and Art History Abroad whose generosity has made this exhibition possible. This exhibition is also supported by longstanding donor, The Coode-Adams Firstsite Trust.





10am - 5pm


10am - 5pm


10am - 10pm


10am - 10pm


10am - 10pm


10am - 5pm

Share with a friend:

You might also like...



Claire Cansick: You and I Are Earth

What effect do we have on the landscapes around us? You and I Are Earth charts the devastating effects of climate change and the human impact on the environment across the world.

Find out more

Talks & Events

Petals and Palettes: Lucy Harwood’s Love of Nature

With Hugh St Clair, plus guests   Join us for an insightful panel conversation led by Hugh St Clair, the co-curator of our exhibition ‘Lucy Harwood: Bold Impressions.’ He will be joined by Cressida Ross, Lucy Harwood’s great niece,…

Find out more


Exhibition on Screen: Painting the Modern Garden – Monet to Matisse

Monet to Matisse takes a magical journey to discover how different contemporaries of Monet built and cultivated modern gardens.

Find out more
Welcome area at Firstsite. 'Big Hello' (2018) Peter Liversidge. Photo by Jayne Lloyd.

Join our mailing list

Sign up to our mailing list to receive the latest updates from Firstsite.