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About Alexandra Nechita...

 

Alexandra Nechita is one of the most famous artists alive today. That's quite an honor for one who is just 12 years old. The story of Alexandra's journey to where she is today takes on a storybook aura.

Alexandra's father, Niki, fled Communist Romania for the United States, leaving his wife, Viorica, who was 6 months pregnant with Alexandra, behind. After arriving in the States, Niki began his struggle to make a home for his family in a new country. In 1987, Niki was reunited with Viorica and met his baby girl for the first time in Los Angeles, California.

Even at age two, Alexandra was absorbed with her coloring books kept on the book shelves. Worried that their daughter was becoming too isolated, Alexandra's parents stopped buying her coloring books, hoping she would jump rope and play more with her dolls and friends. Niki and Viorica say taking away those coloring books was like taking the oxygen out of her. That's when Alexandra began to draw and color her own figures on scrap computer paper her mother would bring home from work. It was at age four that her parents noticed Alexandra's abstract and Picasso-like styles with four-eyed, two-faced figures.

As a preschooler, Alexandra began using watercolors and another water-based paint called gouache. By the age of six, Alexandra was introduced to oil paints and acrylics and she could not let them go. Soon she began asking for larger and larger canvases.

In the summer, after the third grade, Alexandra began taking her first formal art classes. Elmira Adamian, her drawing teacher at the Barnsdall Junior Art Center in Hollywood, was speechless when she saw the youngster's sketchbook. Recognizing her distinctive style, Adamian encouraged Alexandra's parents away from formal training and urged them to let her develop naturally and innocently.

Alexandra's first art exhibit came on April 1, 1994, when she was only eight years old, in a community library. This was an historical day for Alexandra, as she also became an American citizen, was told she would soon be a big sister, and saw Pablo Picasso's work for the first time at the Los Angeles County Museum.

By the age of nine, Alexandra had several more exhibitions in the Los Angeles area, building up her collection to more than 250 paintings. In the spring of 1995, a CBS producer noticed her work at the Mary Paxon gallery, and an artist's representative spotted her paintings in a local bookstore by summer. Alexandra's career was on the verge of taking off as she soon appeared on CBS Sunday Morning and became the youngest artist to sign with International Art Publishers.

Soon the national and international press couldn't get enough of the child prodigy they named 'Mozart with a paintbrush." Alexandra's unusual talent, heart as big as her canvases, and charismatic personality were almost too good to be true. Alexandra has appeared on countless programs around the world, including CBS Sunday Morning, NB C's Today, The Oprah Winfrey Show, The Rosie O'Donnell Show, and NBC Nightly News with Tom Brokaw.

At age 12, Alexandra's list of accomplishments speaks for itself. Her commissions include the 39th annual Grammy Awards, Polaroid for its 50th Anniversary, and the Andre Agassi Foundation. This past year Alexandra had several solo exhibits across the United States, including an exhibit tour through New Zealand and Australia. Alexandra was also invited to Japan by the Osaka Junior Chamber of Commerce to be one of their Top Outstanding Young Persons. This honor gave her the opportunity to meet with the Emperor and Empress of Japan. NUbreed, Synergy of the Arts also recognized Alexandra at Lincoln Center in New York City for her artistic talents.

Alexandra is very casual about her extraordinary gift for painting. Other kids in her class are very talented, she says, and mentions a friend who draws cartoons. However, what separates her, she believes, is her steady, hard work to develop her skills. "I'm just a normal child. I go to school, I come back, I start painting. Some just go outside, some skateboard, go play tennis, play ping pong or whatever they want to do. But this is what I choose to do."

Much has been written and said to describe this extraordinary artist, but actress Whoopi Goldberg may have explained Alexandra the best in just one sentence: 'The thumbprint of the Great One is on her."