The flower and bulb industry was considerably impacted by the two World Wars when the overwhelming priority was to increase home food production. However, in the 1920s there was a strong post-war market, which led to a resurgence in both daffodil and tulip growing. Bulb growing flourished at this time and this was later remembered as a golden age of expansion. Its mild climate meant Cornwall was celebrated for its early daffodils and tulips. Anemones, irises and violets were also important crops.
During the 1920s, Harold Harvey painted a number of studies of women working in the fields. This represents a rather idealised view of what we know to be backbreaking work. Harvey draws out his composition, showing Penzance beyond, with the patchwork of fields above the town harmonising with the colours in the tulip fields. The turquoise blue bay and the jewel-like colours of the women’s clothes add to the vibrancy, creating a joyous spring scene.
- Harold Harvey
- Oil on Canvas
- 51 x 51cm
- Land & Sea