Mercy Hunter 1910 - 1989


Mercy Hunter was born in Belfast. When she was four years old, she travelled on the Trans-Siberian Railway, to China, where she spent her childhood in Manchuria. She was educated in Toronto and the Belfast Royal Academy. From 1927 to 1929 she studied art at the Belfast College of Art, and at the Royal College of Art. London from 1930 to 1933. Her special interest was calligraphy, and in London she met other Ulster artists including William Scott F. E. McWilliams and Crawford Mitchell, the cousin of her future husband.

She returned to Belfast in 1937 and married George MacCann the sculptor. She taught art in Dungannon High School for Girls, County Tyrone, Banbridge Academy, County Down, Armagh High School and Victoria College, Belfast, where she was head of the art department from 1947 until her retirement in 1970.

She was a member of the Royal Ulster Academy, and served as its president, and was founder member of the Ulster Society of Women Artists. She was awarded the MBE in 1970. Her work is in the Ulster Museum collection.

This website at present represents only a very small fraction of Mercy Hunter’s prolific output. Any further information about the current whereabouts of any of her work would be much appreciated.

Co-ordinated by Iain Mitchell, Mercy Hunter’s nephew, Cambridge, England.

Contact at:

and click here for some relative sites


Crawford Mitchell                George MacCann                    Iain Mitchell


Mercy Hunter 

Stop press: 3rd November 2010

On 3rd November 2010, family and friends of Mercy attended a short ceremony organised by the Ulster History Circle outside 23 Botanic Avenue, Belfast, to unveil a Blue Plaque in her memory.

Click on the plaque above to find out more about the event.