WILLIAM DUNLAP has distinguished himself as an artist, writer, educator, arts advocate and commentator in a career that has spanned more than three decades.
His paintings, sculpture and constructions are included in public and private collections such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Mississippi Museum of Art, Corcoran Gallery of Art, Lauren Rogers Museum, Exxon-Mobil Corporation, Bank of America, IBM Corporation, Federal Express, The Equitable Collection, Ogden Museum of Southern Art, Arkansas Art Center, the United States State Department, the U. S. Federal Reserve, and United States Embassies throughout the world.
His extensive exhibiting career includes shows at the Corcoran Gallery of Art, National Academy of Science, Aspen Museum of Art, Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, Museum of Western Virginia, Albany Museum of Art, Ogden Museum of Southern Art, Cheekwood Fine Arts Center, Mint Museum of Art, Mississippi Museum of Art, Contemporary Art Center in New Orleans, the Lauren Rogers Museum as well as other museum venues and commercial galleries throughout the United States.
Mr. Dunlap’s highly narrative work draws largely from art, history and the landscape. His 14-panel, 112 feet long cyclorama painting entitled Panorama of the American Landscape depicts a contemporary view of the Shenandoah Valley in summer and the Antietam battlefield in winter. Commissioned by the Corcoran Gallery of Art and first exhibited in their Rotunda Gallery in 1985, this monumental painting has been shown in more than a dozen American museums and art centers before finding its home in the permanent collection of the Mississippi Museum of Art in Jackson. Reconstructed Recollections; In the Spirit of the Land; Dialogue/Monologue/Travelogue/Hollow Log and What Dogs Dream are all thematic exhibitions, installations and/or performances of Dunlap’s work that continue to tour museums and art centers throughout the nation.
As a curator, Mr. Dunlap has worked in conjunction with the Meridian International Center in Washington, DC on A Winding River: Contemporary Painting from Vietnam, followed by Outward Bound: American Art on the Brink of the 21st Century, and True Colors: Meditations on the American Spirit. All three shows opened at the Meridian International Center in Washington, DC, before traveling extensively throughout the U.S., Europe and Asia.
In 1994, Dunlap received a Lila Wallace Foundation International Artists Fellowship to live and work in Bangkok, Thailand in order to research, compare, and contrast the Cha Praya/Mekong River culture to that of the Yazoo/Mississippi Delta. In conjunction with this six months residence, he served as Resident Scholar at Silpakorn Fine Arts University and traveled extensively throughout Southeast Asia to Vietnam, Cambodia and Burma. It is at this time he became acquainted with photographer/archivists Doug Niven and Chris Riley and their Killing Field photographic archive project which Mr. Dunlap would write about with Linda Burgess in Facing the Past: Cambodia Then and Now published in the Washington Review. Mr. Dunlap has also contributed articles to art journals and periodicals including Art News, Art and Antiques, and the Washington Post. William Dunlap has also been the subject of profiles in The Shenandoah Review, Ontario Review and collaborated Willie Morris on the book, Homecomings.
Mr. Dunlap has received a residency fellowship from the Rockefeller Foundation’s Center in Bellagio Italy. He is also the recipient of grants, wards and fellowships from the Warhol Foundation, Virginia Commission for the Arts, Mississippi Institute of Arts and Letters, a SECCA/RJR Nabisco Visual Artists Award, the Mississippi Governor's Award for Excellence in the Arts and most recently was a Visiting Artist at the American Academy in Rome.
He is an inspired speaker and has served as moderator and panelist on numerous occasions and has lectured on art related subjects at colleges, universities, institutions and professional conferences. He has served as arts commentator on Washington, DC’s WETA-TV's cultural round table show, "Around Town" since 1992 and has contributed arts commentary on WETA radio FM 91.
William Dunlap has an M.F.A. from the University of Mississippi, and was a Professor of Art at Appalachian State University in North Carolina (1970-79) and Memphis State University (1979-80).
DUNLAP, a comprehensive survey of his work with essay by J. Richard Gruber and foreword by Julia Reed, was published by the University Press of Mississippi in 2006.
Over the years, Mr. Dunlap has served on the boards of institutions and foundations related to the arts such as the Eudora Welty Foundation, the Meridian International Center, the Wolf Trap Foundation for the Performing Arts, the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, the Mississippi Museum of Art as well as others.
William Dunlap maintains studios in McLean, Virginia; Mathiston, Mississippi; and Coral Gables, Florida. He is married to artist/writer Linda Burgess. They have one daughter, Maggie Dunlap, a published illustrator and exhibiting artist.