Memorial-Professor Jacek Gaj

It is with great regret that we announce that on February 6, 2021, an outstanding Graphic Artist, a wonderful teacher and an extraordinary Man – Professor Jacek Gaj passed away.

The funeral of Professor Jacek Gaj will take place on February 15, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. at the Rakowicki Cemetery in Krakow.

My first, yet not fully conscious then, meeting with the Professor’s art took place in 1982, when I opened the book “W krainie baśni” (In the land of fairy tales), containing Silesian legends and those from all over the world, illustrated by Professor Jacek Gaj and Professor Stanisław Kluska. Visual reading of this collection of fairy tales was a fascinating adventure for me, and the illustrations proposed by Jacek Gaj stayed in my memory forever. These were not drawings for children, but beautiful graphic miniatures that treated the little reader as a fully-fledged partner, sensitizing them to the graphic artistry and tasteful message. Many years later, while browsing the Collections of the Triennial for the first time, I saw a print devoted to the figure of Odysseus. The small surface of the paper tightly filled with the image had an extraordinary power of influence. Looking at it, I myself felt like Odysseus amidst the immensity of waves, only after a while I noticed a swirling crowd of figures that merged with the sea in an inseparable way. The figure of a lonely sailor who with determination moves towards his goal will forever remain for me a metaphor of the Professor as an Artist –Printmaker consistently building his own language of expression, resistant to passing fashions and quasi-attractive creative tools.

I would like to thank the Professor for all the works he has always created with the viewer in mind, and I express my sincere condolences to the Family of Professor Jacek Gaj.

Marta Anna Raczek-Karcz
President of the Executive Board
International Print Triennial Society in Krakow