Gus Bundy

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1_Gus Bundy close wall.JPG
2_Gus Bundy full wall 2.JPG
3_Gus Bundy frame 2.jpg
4_Gus Bundy back easel 2.JPG
5_Gus Bundy back.JPG

Gus Bundy

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St. Mary’s Church, Virginia City, Nevada, c.1940s

  • Silver gelatin print
  • Image (sight): 10" high x 13" wide
  • Frame: 18.5” high x 22.5” wide
  • Signature: Penciled on mat remnant attached verso
  • Title and original date of purchase (1947) on reverse 

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About the work

A very fine circa 1940s silver gelatin photograph of St. Mary’s in the Mountains Church by Nevada photographer, poet, and artist Gus Bundy (1907-1984). The photo is housed in a period frame under glass. Original prints by Bundy are extremely rare outside of museums and educational institutions. 

A remnant of the original mat attached verso includes Bundy’s pencil signature. An original label from Britnell’s Art Galleries is also attached to the reverse, along with dust cover remnants inscribed with the title and a note stating that the photo was purchased from Gus Bundy in Reno during December 1947.  

About the artist… 

Gus Bundy was born in New York City in 1907. His connection to Nevada began when he visited a friend in 1939 on his way to Japan, and some two years later he decided to settle in Washoe Valley. At the time, he was one of the very few artists living in northern Nevada. 

By the time Bundy moved to Nevada, he had developed skills in a variety of artistic endeavors, including photography. As his wife Jeanne put it, "He was in a sense a Renaissance Man—not content with just one form of creative expression. He painted, sculpted, made jewelry, did photography and worked with wood. He built things—he was fascinated with the process of creation."

One of the reasons Bundy settled in Nevada was his keen interest in people. They dominate much of his artwork, especially his drawings, paintings, and photographs. He possessed a  unique ability to go beyond simple portraiture and delineate the personality of his subjects.

Bundy's presence made an enormous difference to the art world of Northern Nevada. He was always part of the nucleus of some group or another. He had an affinity for and was drawn to all creative people, not just artists. The group that met in the old brewery in Virginia City included such notable personalities as Walter Van Tilburg Clark and Roger Butterfield. Bundy also wrote poetry, examples of which are held in the collection of Nevada Fine Art. 

Biographical information sourced from the Nevada Historical Society Quarterly, Vol. 33, Summer 1990, Number 2.

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