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December 21, 1921 - January 2, 2013 OKLAHOMA CITY Alexandra Alaupovic, internationally known artist and professor, died January 2, 2013. She was born December 21, 1921 in Podravska Slatina, Croatia to Elizabeta and Joseph Vrbanic who both had a strong influence on her artistic career. Alexandra created her first sculpture at age five and took art classes from then on, eventually studying at the Academy of Visual Arts in Zagreb from 1944-1948. In 1947 she married Peter Alaupovic who would later become a distinguished biochemist. Together they moved to Prague, Czechoslovakia where Alexandra continued her studies at the Academy of Visual Arts. They returned to Zagreb, where in 1949 their only child, Betsy, was born. In 1958, along with her husband and daughter, Alexandra immigrated to the United States, settling in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois where she studied photography and commercial art at the University of Illinois Art School. In 1960 the family moved to Oklahoma City so Peter could take a position at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation. Alexandra enrolled in the graduate program at the University of Oklahoma, earning a Master of Fine Art degree in 1966. While at OU she received the University's prestigious Oscar Jacobson Award for her sculpture "Moon Girl." That same year, 1964, she became an American citizen in a moving ceremony in downtown Oklahoma City. Since that time, Alexandra has lived and worked in Oklahoma City exhibiting on a local, national and international level. Her work is contained in many public and private collections in the United States, Canada, Sweden, Germany, Croatia, France, Japan and Argentina. Though recognized for the variety of materials and techniques used in her sculpture, Alexandra is best known for her bronzes which range from realistic portrait heads to abstract works. A participant in art exhibits in the United States and the world, Alexandra was included in "Since Statehood: 12 Oklahoma Artists," La Mandragore International Galerie d'Art, Paris, France and the Oklahoma City Arts Festival. In 1987, she was honored by a retrospective at the Oklahoma Art Center in Oklahoma City. Her work is in the permanent collections of Oklahoma State Art Collection at the State Capitol, Oklahoma City Museum of Art, Norick Art Center, Overholser Mansion, Oklahoma Aviation and Space Hall of Fame, Casady School, Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation, Mercy Health Center, OU Health Sciences Center, all of Oklahoma City and of the Fred Jones, Jr. Museum of Art, Sam Viersen Gymnastic Center and Sam Noble Oklahoma Museum of Natural History all in Norman. Her biography is included in "Contemporary American Women Sculptors, North American Women Artists of the 20th Century, and Who's Who in America. Alexandra was equally dedicated to sharing her talents by teaching for over 20 years and encouraging young artists at the University of Oklahoma School of Art, Oklahoma Science and Arts Foundation, and Oklahoma City University where she was a Professor of Sculpture. She was a frequent speaker at various art clubs and civic organizations. In addition to her artistic career, Alexandra (known to friends as Sandra) enjoyed gourmet cooking, entertaining, gardening, attending art gallery and museum events, operas, traveling, and spending time with her family and friends. She is survived by her loving husband of 65 years, Peter Alaupovic; her daughter, Betsy Alaupovic Hyde of Oklahoma City; two grandsons, Homer Clark Hyde of Chicago and Robert Alexander Hyde and his wife, Mary of Cleveland, Ohio. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that contributions be made in Alexandra's memory to: The Oklahoma City Museum of Art, 415 Couch Drive, Oklahoma City, OK 73102. Services are private.

Published in The Oklahoman on Jan. 4, 2013
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