It is with deep sorrow that we announce the sudden passing of Ivan Neaigus, 81, of Langley, Wash., on July 8, 2021.
Ivan was born to Israel (Jack) and Miriam (Min) Neaigus on July 13, 1939, in London, England. He grew up during World War II, surviving the bombing of London during the Blitz. He remembered first meeting his father at the age of 4 when Jack was home on leave from the war.
Ivan was selected to receive a scholarship from St. Martin’s School of Art in London where he completed his education. His professional career began as a fashion designer in London. In 1963, he emigrated to Los Angeles, Calif., where he was soon joined by the rest of his family. There, he had a successful career designing menswear and fabrics within the global fashion industry.
He soon met and married his first wife, Karen, and together shared interests in art, yoga and meditation. He was also inspired by modern jazz, existential literature and Zen philosophy. His artistic talents and style continued to evolve through the years.
In 1984, he and his second wife, Sarah Wallace, found the home they had been seeking in Langley, Wash., on Whidbey Island, where they became active in the local arts community. Ivan provided dedicated, loving care for Sarah until she passed from Alzheimer’s disease in 2012. In time, Ivan began a relationship with long-time friend, Toni Talia Marcus, an accomplished composer and violinist then living in Langley.
Ivan lived his life — as a person and an artist — with creativity and a strong sense of decency and responsibility. His sensitivity and ethics guided him throughout his life. He was a founding member of the Sculptors Cooperative Northwest and a member and featured artist of the Northwest Stone Sculptors Association. His work unlocked the essence hidden within natural elements and forms, which is reflected in his many remarkable sculptures and paintings.
Ivan will be sadly missed and lovingly remembered by his family and friends. He is survived by his partner Talia; sister Jean (Andy); brother Alan (Maryann); nephews Howard and Randy (Jennifer); niece Leona (Dave); grandniece Samantha; stepdaughters from Sarah, Gail, Jamie, and Tammy; and his many cousins and extended family.
Our dear Ivan, may your memory be a blessing and may you rest in peace for eternity.
In recognition of Ivan’s wishes, please consider making donations in his memory to the Bleeding Disorder Foundation of Washington, www.bdfwa.org; Washington State Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, www.alz.org/alzwa; or “Time Together” Adult Care Program on Whidbey Island, www.senior-resources.org/timetogether.
A Celebration of Ivan’s Life will be announced at a later date.