Alexander Opekushin

Alexander Opekushin (1838-1923) - the Russian sculptor.

Opekushin was born in Rybnitsy, Yaroslavl’ province. The son of a peasant, he studied from 1859 to 1864 at the Academy of Arts in St Petersburg under the sculptor David Jensen (1816–1902). He then worked with Mikhail Mikeshin on the monuments for the Millennium of Russia in Novgorod and to Catherine II in Ostrovsky Square in St Petersburg (both in situ).

In 1872 he took part in several competitions and worked on the monument to Aleksandr Pushkin in Pushkin Square on Gorky Street [now Tverskaya Street] in Moscow (completed 1880). The monument, showing Pushkin in a simple, unaffected pose, is one of the most popular public sculptural works by a Russian artist. Among Opekushin’s other executed designs, the most notable are three bronze monuments: to Aleksandr Pushkin in Pushkinskaya Street, St Petersburg (bronze, 1884), the scientist Karl Ber in Derpt (now Tartu, Estonia; 1881) and the poet Mikhail Lermontov in Pyatigorsk (1883–9; all in situ).