Maryellis Bunn is an American businesswoman and entrepreneur who is best known for founding the Museum of Ice Cream. She's a woman with a vision and she has plans to change the world. Bunn serves as the CEO of the company that she established and he has a unique leadership style that is worth taking a second look at. This extraordinary leader is someone who caught our attention and her story is well-worth telling. When looking into her past and career history we made some interesting discoveries we'd like to share with you with these 20 things you probably didn't know about Maryellis Bunn.
1. The Museum of Ice Cream is a pop-up exhibition
The exhibition was co-founded by Bunn and her partner Manish Vora, but it was Maryellis' idea. She was looking for a way to connect to millennials and so she took the approach of having fun and making them feel like kids again. Ice cream brings people together because almost everyone loves the frozen confection. Although it is a temporary art exhibition, the term museum was used because it's a familiar term. This is an interactive art exhibit featuring ice cream and candy exhibits in bright colors, mazes of rooms with a rock-candy cave, a rainbow sprinkles swimming pool and a unicorn. There are also numerous tasting stations throughout the exhibit.
2. Tickets are purchased in advance
There is only one way that you can attend the Museum of Ice Cream. You must purchase tickets in advance to reserve your time slot. The only place to purchase tickets is online so there are no long lines to contend with and you can print them out from your computer or compatible online device. You can go directly to the website to find out where the next pop-up exhibit is scheduled to appear. It is an experience that will take you back to a time of childhood innocence with few or no cares.
3. The exhibit originated in Manhattan
The opening of the exhibit took place in the summer of 2016 in Manhattan. After that, it traveled to Los Angeles, California, San Francisco, and Miami, Florida. There have been over 500,000 visitors to the exhibit in the time that it's been open and the San Francisco exhibit was particularly impressive, selling out in just 18 minutes after the first batch of tickets were made available.
4. The Museum of Ice Cream draws celebrities
Anyone is welcome to buy tickets and attend the Museum of Ice Cream. People from all walks of life have gone through the mazes of rooms. There have even been some famous celebrity personalities there. Kim Kardashian, Katy Perry, Drew Barrymore, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Jay-Z was there with Beyonce and Blue Ivy on Mother's Day taking photographs while lounging in the Sprinkle Pool.
5. A lot of selfies have been taken there
The Museum of Ice Cream has been promoted even more heavily over social media because of the thousands of selfies that have been taken against the backdrop of the exhibits. People were happy to share their experiences on Instagram, Facebook, Flickr, and other sites and it started a big-time excitement that made others want to get in on the fun. Social media has served as an amazing form of advertisement for the Museum of Ice Cream.
6. Maryellis conducted an experiment with the Museum of Ice Cream
Bunn set up an experiment that she called the "device-free" experiment. She did not put a ban on phones or devices, nor did she force any of the visitors to leave their phones behind, but she did get a group of guests together who were willing to consent to a trip through the exhibit without any devices. This was to find out if the experience through the exhibit would be enhanced when there were no electronics to offer a distraction. She pointed out that some of the best times of our lives happen when we're not interrupted by messages or calls which take us away from the people that we are with at the time and disrupt interactions with others. It's more like an interruption-free test and the results were amazing. People had a great time without electronics because they were able to focus on each moment of the experience without distraction.
7. The Museum of Ice Cream is about sensory and psychological connections
The exhibit was set up to provide a large array of sensory experiences. It was visually stimulating with exhibits of pleasure arousing confections in bright and vivid colors. It was a wonderland of visual and taste stimulation. The tasting stations presented yet another type of stimulus for the pleasure centers. There were things to see, to smell, to touch and to taste.
8. Bunn has consulted with professional psychologists
Maryellis Bunn is trying to create connectivity from one person to another without the distraction that is provided by connectivity. It's a nationwide addiction that is associated with the automatic tendency to capture moments and comment, share, scroll down and hit refresh on our phones. An increase in depression and other mental health issues has been noted and there is evidence to suggest that the huge amount of time that is spent doing so is not good for our mental health. Bunn sees the issue and she is attempting to create a type of connectivity that does not feed into the growing problem with addiction to social media and the use of electronics as a major life activity. It has become a dependency rather than a useful tool and it has led to a breakdown in communication rather than an enhancer.
9. There is a permanent exhibit opened
The first permanent Museum of Ice Cream exhibit has been opened in San Francisco. This is a positive for people who want to give it a try and who seek to experience that connection with what is real and tangible. It's a way to live in the moment if you understand the true purpose of the exhibit. Who could have imagined tht people would bond over an exhibit that is based upon ice cream and other sweet treats?
10. Maryellis is an expert on the power of spaces
Many of us do not think about how space affects us, although we talk about it without thinking. Maryellis Bunn has spent a great deal of time researching who the space around us impacts us. One of the goals that she has realized through the Museum of Ice Cream is to create spaces where people are given the opportunity to engage them, and it's about becoming engaged and living in the moment and enjoying the fullness of an experience without willfully interrupting the engagement until after spending time in the situation and allowing ourselves to be immersed in it. The spaces in the exhibits are created for that purpose.
11. She didn't start out to build a business
Although the Ice Cream Museum has turned into a successful business, this wasn't Bunn's original intention. All that she really set out to do was to give back to her community and provide the people with something positive and uplifting. This was intended to be a small act of kindness. She wanted to develop a hands-on interactive experience that would be just as engaging if not more than social media and connected devices.
12. She used to work for Time Inc.
After Maryellis Bunn graduated from college, she went to work for Time Inc. Part of her job was to assist the publication in discovering new trends as well as adopting new types of technology. After she left the job at Time Inc. there was a period in her life when she wandered. This gave her time to think and to plan and it was also when she started to Museum of Ice Cream.
13. She sees a battle between online vs offline realities
Bunn shared that she sees a constant battle raging and it is a fight for the time that people have available during their waking hours. It is how people spend the time that they have. At this point in history, the majority of people are dedicating the larger part of their available time to digital space and online interactions. This cuts down on the amount of time left to spend meaningful time interacting with others and also having individual experiences. Too much time spent online makes it impossible to have full and meaningful experiences in more engaging spaces.
14. Bunn is trying to raise awareness
Maryellis Bunn is trying to raise the awareness of people about how spending too much time online robs them of engaging in other meaningful experiences. The Museum of Ice Cream exhibit is a subtle way to do that. It began as a creative experience for Bunn, and she is sharing it with the world. It shows everyone how interaction with space can have a profound effect on one's thinking and their lives. Going to the exhibit is something that is engaging and there is anticipation built in attendees for days before the visit actually takes place. It's something to look forward to and the experience can be very moving.
15. Bunn defines "better experiences" for us
Maryellis doesn't just throw catchy phrases or attractive terms around. She has spent a great deal of time and effort in researching and understanding what creating "better experiences" really means. It's in creating a space where people can come together and engage with one another. Each corner of the exhibit is designed to give visitors a sense of the space and their understanding of it. This can be different for everyone but it's in exploration and discovery and thinking about what is happening in a particular moment in a particular space and taking in all of the elements without interruption. It is about savoring the moments.
16. She has her own website
Maryellis Bunn has a website that is dedicated to searching for connections between people that are unexpected yet impactful. For her, these connections hold the power to change the expectations that people have as well as to enable the development of new ideas for both people in their personal lives as well as for business.
17. Bunn has several important clients
Helping her in her pursuit of promoting human connections and real communications are several well-known and large companies within social media and television media. Her major clients are Facebook, Instagram, Time Inc., Staples, Fortune, and WSGN. Her website is simple and straight-forward and it also includes an email contact form for those who wish to get ahold of her or to share a message.
18. Bunn founded 1 and 8 Inc
In addition to founding the Museum of Ice Cream, Maryellis has also established another company. She is the Creative Director for the business and she specializes in the design and construction of socially-squared spaces. Her work aims to provoke inspiration while fostering community and celebrating the power that is inherent within the human imagination.
19. She is a college graduate
Maryellis attended NYU and the Parsons School of Design. She earned a dual degree in business and design prior to founding the Museum of Ice Cream. She first laid a solid foundational education prior to embarking on her entrepreneurial efforts.
20. She has an impressive history for her creative contributions
It is well-deserved each time that Maryellis Bunn is recognized for an innovation or achievement in business. She is one of the most creative people on earth, and it shows in the work that she does. Bunn led Time Inc.'s innovation department and is now a creative consultant and design strategist for several large companies. The clients that she currently serves are those which are listed on her website, including many social media giants and more. She understands the psychological impacts of the use of space and how to create spaces that will leave better impressions for those who occupy them both online and offline.
Written by Allen Lee
Read more posts by Allen Lee