United States. Dept. of the Treasury. Section of Fine Arts Search this
Place of publication, production, or execution:
13.4 Linear feet
The collection is arranged as 10 series: Series 1: Biographical Material, 1910-2009 (Box 1, 12, FC 33; 0.7 linear feet) Series 2: Correspondence, 1927-2006 (Box 1; 0.3 linear feet) Series 3: Project Files, circa 1925-2002 (Box 1-3, 12, OV 15-19, RD 31; 2.2 linear feet) Series 4: Industrial Design Records, circa 1944-1977 (Box 3, 12, OV 20; 0.6 linear feet) Series 5: Papers Relating to Grant Wood, 1935-2006 (Box 3-4, 12; 0.5 linear feet) Series 6: Diaries and Journals, 1929-2003 (Box 4-6; 2.2 linear feet) Series 7: Writings and Notes, circa 1928-2004 (Box 6-7; 1.0 linear foot) Series 8: Printed Material, 1896-2009 (Box 7-8, 12, OV 21; 1.4 linear feet) Series 9: Photographs, 1863-1990s (Box 8-9, 13; 1.6 linear feet) Series 10: Artwork, circa 1926-2004 (Box 9-11, 14, OVs 22-30, RD 32; 2.3 linear feet)
Access Note / Rights:
Use of original papers requires an appointment. Use of archival audiovisual recordings with no duplicate copy requires advance notice.
The papers of painter, muralist, and designer William E. L. Bunn measure 13.4 linear feet and date from 1863-2009. The collection documents Bunn's career as a painter, industrial designer, and his work on Treasury Department post office mural commissions through biographical material, scattered correspondence, project files, industrial design records, diaries and journals, writings and notes, printed material, photographs, and artwork. Also found are Bunn's papers regarding Grant Wood.
William E. L. Bunn papers, 1863-2009. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.
Sketchbooks 4 and 5 are available on 35 mm microfilm reel 3813 at the Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.
William E. L. Bunn (1910-2009) was a designer, muralist, and painter in Ft. Madison, Iowa and Ojai, California. Bunn was born in Muscatine, Iowa and received his B.A. in Graphic and Plastic Arts and an M.A. in Theater Design, both from the University of Iowa. In 1937 he was awarded a one-year post-graduate fellowship as an art intern for Grant Wood. From 1938 to 1942 he won four commissions from the Treasury Department to produce murals for Federal buildings. He also exhibited paintings, primarily depicting Mississippi River steamboats, at the National Academy of Design, Art Institute of Chicago, Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, and other group shows. Beginning in 1943 Bunn worked as an industrial designer at several companies including Sheaffer Pen Company (1946-1967) and Cuckler Steele Span Company (1967-1977). After his retirement, he and his wife, Annavene, moved to California, and he continued to paint. Bunn was also active in the Theosophical Society and had an interest in aviation.
The collection was donated by William E. L. Bunn in 1989 and in 2010 by Bunn's daughter, Chari Petrowski. In 1986 two sketchbooks and sketches were transferred with Bunn's permssion from the General Services Administration, which had received them from Bunn.
Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution, 750 9th St. NW, Washington, D.C. 20001