Paula Bunch passed away peacefully, aged 77 on Thursday May 20, in her home, with her husband and relatives at her side. She was born in Chicago on June 29, 1943, known as baby girl Kintzele. Although she was adopted days later her early life was difficult. Her first adoptive mother became terminally ill, and aged 5 she was placed in a children’s home. She lived there for several years, until adopted for the second time by her much-loved parents Bill and Carol Barnes on the east side of Madison.
Paula was always curious about her birth parents and searched for them for many years. In the days before the internet that was particularly difficult. However, she persisted, and finally made contact with one of her sisters. She went on to meet her mother Jean Kinztele and her 4 siblings in Chicago, and they became close family. Two of her siblings and her niece were with her in her last hours.
Paula was an accomplished artist, with a B.A. and M.F.A. from the University of Wisconsin Madison. Her paintings and photographs have been exhibited widely in the U.S. and abroad. Her photographs of the decaying Badger Ammunition Plant in Wisconsin were published and remain on display at the museum documenting its history.
Whilst studying at UW she met Mike, in the endearing bar on State Street called the Kollege Klub. That three-hour meeting led to 56 years of marriage, two daughters, Shelley and Lesley, four grandchildren, Max, Dylan, Alex and Tatum, and one great grandchild Ozzy.
Together Mike and Paula set up Bunch Presses, designing, manufacturing and supplying etching presses to individual artists, businesses, and colleges across the US. Through the company they met many artists, and in the process built a collection of prints from artists and professors throughout the US and England.
Paula loved her work as an artist. She produced work tirelessly, and continued her study of art theory and history throughout her career. Her support for other artists was unwavering. She set up the Water Street Gallery in Prairie du Sac to collaborate with and promote the work of her fellow artists.
The determination, dedication and energy with which Paula approached her career hugely inspired her daughters. Shelley, a certified Nurse Midwife, has for many years been the Director of Midwifery at St. Anthony Hospital in Chicago. Lesley, like her mother, is dedicated to a career in art. She is a painter and photographer who has also exhibited her work widely throughout the US, Europe, South America and Asia.
Burial will be in the Bayfield Cemetery on June 13 and a celebration of her life and her art will be at our home, 81555 Bayview Park Road, Washburn, the same day at 4:00 pm.
We ask that any memorials please be given to Regional Hospice.
You can mail your donation to:
Regional Hospice, 1913 Beaser Avenue, Ashland, WI 54806
To view this obituary online, sign the guest book or express online condolences, visit us at www.bratleyfamilyfuneral home.com