Dennis Miller Bunker (November 6, 1861 – December 28, 1890) was an American painter and innovator of American Impressionism. His mature works include both brightly colored landscape paintings and dark, finely drawn portraits and figures. One of the major American painters of the late 19th century, a friend of many prominent artists of the era, Bunker died from meningitis at the age of 29. Bunker was born in New York City to Matthew Bunker, the secretary-treasurer of the Union Ferry Company, and his wife, Mary Anne Eytinge Bunker. In 1876 he enrolled at the Art Students League of New York and the National Academy of Design. By 1880 he was participating in the annual exhibitions of the National Academy, the American Watercolor Society, and the Brooklyn Art Association. In 1881 Bunker exhibited a watercolor at the Boston Art Club. He subsequently exhibited both oil paintings and watercolors at the Club in 1882 and 1883. In 1886, the American printmaker Louis Prang exhibited two of Bunker's works from his own collection at the Club. In 1882 Bunker left New York to study at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris, most notably with Jean-Léon Gérôme. In the spring of 1883, accompanied by fellow students Charles A. Platt and Kenneth R. Cranford, Bunker left Paris to travel through the French countryside and the coast of Normandy, returning to continue his studies in mid-October. The following year the three artists summered and painted in Brittany. By year's end Bunker had returned to New York City. In 1885 Bunker was elected to the Society of American Artists. In October of that year, at the recommendation of J. Carroll Beckwith, he moved to Boston to teach at the Cowles Art School, where he was the chief instructor of figure and cast drawing, artistic anatomy, and composition. He lived and taught in the art school building. Concurrently Bunker was given his first solo exhibition, at Noyes and Blakeslee Gallery in Boston. Despite these successes, Bunker was homesick for France, and wrote of feeling supremely ridiculous in this atmosphere of wealth and respectability. While meager finances prevented him from staying in Boston during the summer, let alone traveling to Europe, Bunker did accept an invitation from Abbott Handerson Thayer to join him and paint in South Woodstock, Connecticut in 1886. In that year he also met Isabella Stewart Gardner, who would prove to be a valuable friend and patron. Bunker painted portraits during the winter of 1887, and spent the summer in Newburyport, Massachusetts with artist friends; including Henry Oliver Walker. In November he met John Singer Sargent in Boston, during the latter's first working trip to America. In 1888 Bunker undertook a number of portrait commissions of important Bostonians, including members of the Gardner family, Samuel Endicott Peabody, and J. Montgomery Sears. Bunker spent the summer in England, where he joined Sargent and his family in Calcot, painting during the day and playing tennis in the evening. During the spring of 1889 Bunker resigned from the Cowles Art School. At a reception he met Eleanor Hardy, whom he would marry the following year. In the summer Bunker stayed at a boarding house in Medfield, Massachusetts, and enjoyed his most productive season of painting. In the fall he returned to New York, writing daily to Hardy in Boston. By this time, Bunker's circle of friends included not only Sargent, Gardner, and Platt, but Thomas Wilmer Dewing, William Merritt Chase, Stanford White, William Dean Howells, Charles Martin Loeffler, and Augustus Saint-Gaudens, as well. In 1890 Bunker first exhibited his impressionist landscapes at the St. Botolph Club in Boston. He received an offer to teach at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and planned to take over William Merritt Chase's class in Brooklyn that winter. In June he visited the art colony at Cornish, New Hampshire, and in July returned to paint further at Medfield. On October 2 Bunker married Eleanor Hardy in Boston. The Cornish Colony Artist, Henry Oliver Walker, was Best Man at Bunker's wedding. Bunker had been Walker's Best Man at Walker's wedding the previous year. The couple then moved to New York. Returning to Boston to celebrate Christmas with the Hardy family, Bunker fell ill.