A. Dzigurski Sr.

Best known for his dynamic views along the California coast, Alexander Dzigurski also painter in the Rocky Mountains, Glacier National Park, along the New England coast and in the Grand Tetons. The artist was born the son of a wheat farmer in Backa, in Stari Becej, Yugoslavia on February 1, 1911. With the help of the Serbian Church he went to Belgrade, lived at the Rakovica Monastery and attended the School of Art, graduating at the age of 18 in 1929. He continued his studies at Munich's Academy of Art and for 2 years he volunteered in the King’s Navy (1939-1941). While in the navy, he began to understand and paint the sea and he opened his first studio Zograf in 1941. He started his career in his native Yugoslavia by decorating the interior of churches and he became a sought-after portrait painter. When Hilter’s army took most of his Navy unit prisoner (Dzigurski escaping), the artist fled from Tito’s communist regime via Italy and lived for a few months in Vienna. He and his wife Lenka and daughter Jelena departed Naples aboard the Marine Jumper and arrived in NYC at the end of 1949.
Dzigurski painted and did hundreds of mosaic icons and murals for the Serbian Orthadox Church in Pennsylvania (supported by the Bishop) after he arrived in the US. By 1952, the artist could afford to travel and paint, settled in California, painted the west coast, and was on the staff of the International Art Publishing Company in Detroit, MI. When his wife died in 1968, the artist grew despondent and almost gave up painting. Upon breaking his arm, he recovered with the help of a friendly nurse Dorothy T. Dravis, whom he soon married and she bore him a son (now an artist).
Member: Fine Arts Institute, Los Angeles; American Artists Professional League, NYC; the Franklin Mint Museum, PA; the Republic Bank of Dallas; R.W. Norton Gallery, Shreveport, LA; the Michigan Bank of Chicago; the Ravenswood Bank of Chicago and the Society of Western Artists. His work is represented in the Belgrade Art Museum, Yugoslavia and the Ford Museum in Detroit, MI. The Findlay Galleries of Chicago was one of his most active agents.
Dzigurski wanted to capture the beauty of America’s seas and mountains, representing its glorious panoramas on canvas. He said, "I love art. I am going to go like everyone is going to disappear, but my art will outlive me." The artist passed away in San Francisco in November, 1995, being eulogized as "one of America's finest painters of the sea."
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