Important individual collections include a series of watercolours by Doris Blair, official war artist, recording life at Belfast's Musgrave Park U.S. Army Hospital during the Second World War and featuring many portraits of nursing staff and patients, as well as depictions of women's war work and work by ancillary defence services.
Also in the collections are: a series of very fine mid-18th century watercolour sketches of urban and rural scenes throughout the north of Ireland by John Nixon; an important series of topographical pencil drawings by Robert Dawson in relation to his work with the Ordnance Survey in north-west Ulster in the 1820s; a series of views of ancient monuments and castles attributed to the 18th-century Dutch artist, Gabriel Beranger; and topographical works by Andrew
Nicholl, Joseph Molloy, Ernest Hanford and Raymond Piper.
The department also holds the McGowan collection of commissioned work by Frank McKelvey and a series of portraits of military figures from the First World War, painted by William Conor in Ballykinlar in 1916.
Doris Blair. The increased number of women in the workforce played a very important role in raising productivity in Northern Ireland during World War II. This woman is engaged on the production of munitions at Mackie's factory, Belfast.
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