Three Belfast Artists


Mercy Hunter

1910 - 89

Crawford Mitchell

1908 - 76

George MacCann

1909 - 67

Click on a photo to explore the work of each of these artists

These three Belfast artists were all related, they were all born within two years, and followed similar career paths. Crawford Mitchell and George Galway MacCann were cousins, the latter marrying Mercy Hunter in 1937. All studied initially at the Belfast College of Art, before winning scholarships to the Royal College of Art in London.

In London they formed part of a colony of Ulster students all of whom have since exercised considerable influence, through their work and teaching, on subsequent generations of Ulster artists. John Luke, F. E. McWilliam, and Tom Carr were at the Slade, William Scott, William Tocher, Romeo Toogood, Jean Harvey and (later) James McCord and Betty Clements and James Warwick (Headmaster of the Belfast College of Art) were all at the Royal College together from 1930 to 1933.

All three returned to Belfast in the 1930s and pursued careers both as teachers and artists. Each one had a particular speciality: Crawford as a wood engraver, George as a sculptor and Mercy as a calligrapher,  but all were equally at home in other mediums. Their work and their involvement in the artistic life of postwar Belfast up until the 1970s is significant and deserves celebration.

The three individual websites at present represent only a fraction of their prolific outputs. Any further information about the current whereabouts of any of their work would be much appreciated.


Co-ordinated by Iain Mitchell, (nephew to all three), Cambridge, England.