Two things are abundantly clear about the art of Max Bunnell. He loves painting on location and education. His exhibit “Natural Memorial Realist” is displayed Feb. 23 to March 13 at LXS, the Legislative eXhibition Series Gallery at the Nevada State Legislative Building in Carson City.
The Overton resident taught in Clark County public schools for 29 years and in the extension programs of the University of Nevada campuses in Reno and Las Vegas. Bunnell spent another 10 as a professor at Dixie College in Utah, where he had helped raise more than $300,000 for a new art museum on campus. He started the Dixie Invitational Art Show to earn the money for the museum.
Though he favors painting outdoors, he put in his classroom time to study his craft. A graduate of Brigham Young University, he earned a bachelor of science in art and education and a master’s degree in fine arts. With a Ford Fellow Leadership Scholarship, he studied silversmithing at California State University, Long Beach and the making of American Indian jewelry in Santa Fe.
Family, community and sense of place inspire his work, he said. Bunnell became a driving force in starting local art groups in Nevada, founding the Moapa Valley Art Guild in 1959. He is a professional painter who specializes in watercolor and oil, land and seascapes. His work is based in realism— he paints what he sees— and some impressionism, using his own interpretation. He thrives on going on location with others to paint outdoors, still sharing his talents, teaching and learning too.
Managed by the Artist Services Program of the Nevada Arts Council, the Legislative eXhibition Series has provided a spotlight on the Silver State’s breadth of contemporary and folk artists during the biennial session since 1985. The 2015 LXS Series is funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, Nevada State Legislature and Van Woert Bigotti Architects. Several other Nevada artists will be featured throughout the legislative session. For information visit nac.nevadaculture.org or call (775) 687-6680.