Doc on One: Hugh Lane & his pictures
A detail from Antonia Mancini, Portrait of Sir Hugh Lane (1904) Photo: Dublin City Gallery The Hugh Lane

Doc on One: Hugh Lane & his pictures


A drama-documentary on the life of Hugh Lane, best know for establishing Dublin's Municipal Gallery of Modern Art, the first known public gallery of modern art in the world.

First Broadcast 1961.  Listen here 

Hugh Percy Lane was bork on the 9th of November 1875 in Co. Cork. Brought up in Cornwall in England, he began his career as an apprentice painting restorer and would go on to be a succesful art dealer in London.

Hugh Lane maintained a strong tie to Ireland through regular visits to his Aunt in Co. Galway - Lady Gregory.

Lane was a champion of Irish art abroad, and opened The Municipal Gallery of Modern Art in 1908 at a temporary premises in Harcourt Street, Dublin. He had hoped that the Dublin Corporation would run the gallery, but they were unsure that it would be financially viable.

Tragically, Lane never got to see his gallery permanently located in 1915 as he died at the age of 33 on board the ill fated RMS Lusitania, which sank off the west coast of Ireland after being struck by a German U-Boat torpedo on the 7th of May 1915.

Produced by Michael Garvey

First broadcast 22nd January 1961

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Century Ireland

The Century Ireland project is an online historical newspaper that tells the story of the events of Irish life a century ago.