Painting by artist who attended DWU given to universityIt’s been more than 50 years, but Marilyn Sunderman is still making an impression at Dakota Wesleyan University.
By: News release, Dakota Wesleyan University
It’s been more than 50 years, but Marilyn Sunderman is still making an impression at Dakota Wesleyan University.
Lila (Lee) Ptak, of Huron, formerly of Mitchell, donated Sunderman’s painting “Breeze Among the Flowers” to DWU recently. The artwork was painted circa 1999.
Sunderman, originally of La Sueur, Minn., attended Dakota Wesleyan from 1953 to 1955. Ptak and her late husband, Jerry, both DWU graduates of the late 1950s, remained close friends with Sunderman throughout her life and received several of her paintings and drawings as gifts, but Jerry Ptak actually purchased “Breeze Among the Flowers.”
Sunderman graduated with her bachelor of arts degree from the University of Minnesota in 1958 and earned her living as a professional artist. She traveled the globe painting landscapes, flowers and people, including portraits of George McGovern and her uncle, Sen. Francis Case, both of which are hanging within the McGovern Library on campus.
She also did portraits of famous individuals including John F. Kennedy and a Kuwaiti princess. She lived for many years in Hawaii, where she painted the History of Hawaii — a 65-painting series — and opened her own gallery, until selling everything in 1986 to begin traveling again.
Ptak and her daughter-in-law, Stephanie Ptak, presented the painting to DWU archivist Laurie Langland July 17.
DWU holds other artwork by Sunderman, including “I Butterfly,” “The Awakening,” “Boy & Fish,” “Einstein,” “Golda” and “Sunshine Blues.” Sunderman died in December 2000.