Preview Mode Links will not work in preview mode

Best Of Belfast: Northern Ireland's #1 Interview Podcast

Feb 1, 2021

Sir John Lavery is a painter from Northern Ireland best known for his portraits of Michael Collins, Churchhill and Queen Victoria.


But besides being the most famous painter of his day, the Belfast-born boy came from humble-beginnings.


Baptised in St. Patricks Church, the Cathedral Quarter native was orphaned at a young age when his mother died in childbirth and his father died at sea — after which lived in Moira with his extended family before moving across the pond to work as a photographer's apprentice.


It was there that John developed his passion and talent for art — one that would take him on an extraordinary journey all over the world, and back again to Belfast.


In today's episode, we discover the amazing life and legacy of one of Belfast's most famous individuals while diving deep into the history of the streets he once called home.


Along the way, we meet historians, priests, art curators, modern-day painters and even a publican to try and understand why his story is important for us today.


Check it out.


This episode is part of The Streets Where They Lived: a new documentary collaboration between Successful Belfast, Belfast Buildings Trust, and Best of Belfast. The Streets Where They Lived will feature the stories of six incredible but sometimes overlooked men and women from Belfast and some of the buildings and places in the City with which they’re connected.


The project is a collaboration with Successful Belfast, a project of Belfast Buildings Trust. It is supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Belfast Buildings Trust is a charity founded in 1996 to regenerate Belfast’s landmark buildings. The Trust works to ensure that the City’s authentic heritage is made relevant for people today. One of its projects is Successful Belfast, which champions new and creative ways of involving people in Belfast’s future development.  


Website link:


Best Of Belfast is Northern Ireland's #1 Interview Podcast. We've shared 100+ hour-long conversations with incredible people from Northern Ireland.


To find out more, or join 'The Producers Club' please visit




— Matt