'La Vie en Images', about the end of the seasonal holidays (La Patrie du Dimanche, 7 January 1945).

Jacques Gagnier was a French-Canadian illustrator and cartoonist, whose illustrations appeared in several Québec magazines, newspapers and books. He was house cartoonist and caricaturist for the newspapers La Patrie (1940-1947) and Le Devoir (1961-1967), and was responsible for the current affairs cartoon feature 'La Vie en Images' in La Patrie's Sunday paper from 1944 to 1947.

Early life and career
Gagnier was born in 1917 in Montréal into a family of musicians. His father was a horn player in the Montréal symphony orchestra. Jacques studied at the École Supérieure Saint-Viateur and then at the École des Beaux-Arts in Montréal. He also studied painting for three years. Gagnier began his career as an illustrator and caricaturist in 1935 in Quartier Latin, the student magazine of the University of Montréal. Between 1939 and 1942 he made funny drawings and comic strips with 'Fridolin' for Radiomonde, based on the poor boy in tri-colour Canadiens hockey jersey, knee socks, and suspenders from Gratien Gélinas' comedic stage shows. He also designed posters for the 'Fridolinades' shows themselves.

La Patrie
Jacques Gagnier's association with the newspaper La Patrie began in 1940. His initial contributions were illustrations and caricatures, but he was promoted to make a weekly humorous cartoon chronicle when house caricaturist Arthur LeMay suddenly passed away in January 1944. Gagnier's 'La Vie en Images' debuted on 6 February of that year and ran until his departure from the newspaper in 1947. The cartoon collage commented on elections, war, economic and social policies, fashion, arts, vacations and work from a local point-of-view. Several installments were collected in the book 'La Plume au vent', which was published by Studio Lany in 1946. It was partially reprinted as 'Retour de vacances' by La Pastèque in 2002.


Title page of 'The Children's Book of the Saguenay'.

Illustration career
By 1945 the artist founded his own Studio Jacques Gagnier, which was expanded to Studio Gagnier, Fleury & Associés in 1965. Through this commercial art studio, he did graphic design for books by poet and political activist Félix Leclerc and journalist/politician Jacques Hébert, as well as advertisements for Dow beer and the radio station CKAC. Gagnier made illustrations for the family magazine La Revue Populaire (from 1945 on) and the farmers' magazine Le Bulletin des Agriculteurs (from 1955 on), while serving as a caricaturist for the newspaper Le Devoir from 1961 to 1967. Gagnier furthermore made regular illustrations for nationalist and educational children's books by Leonard L. Knott, such as 'The Children's Book of the Saguenay' (1945), 'The Children's Guide to Montreal' (1955), 'The Children's Guide to Calgary' and 'The Children's Book of Roads' (1952). In a more realistic drawing style, Gagnier made the illustrations for 'Le Frère André' (Fides, 1955), a picture book by Marcel Plamondon about the founder of Montreal's Saint Joseph's Oratory basilica.

Later life and death
Jacques Gagnier devoted his spare time to making (watercolor) paintings, which often depicted downtown Montréal. He won the third prize at the first National Festival of Caricature in 1963. Jacques Gagnier died in Montréal in December 1978.


Gagnier's advertisements for Dow beer presented someone urgently looking for a guy called Jos, who is then seen enjoying his beer (and therefore cannot be disturbed).

Jacques Gagnier at the Wikia La BD de Journal au Québec

Series and books by Jacques Gagnier in stock in the Lambiek Webshop:

X

If you want to help us continue and improve our ever- expanding database, we would appreciate your donation through Paypal.