academic painter Jaromir Fajkus (25. 3. 1924 - 30. 6. 2009)
Jaromír Fajkus was born 25th March 1924 in Pstruží at Frýdlant upon Ostravice in Moravian-Silesian Region. He had two brothers and his father was a mine blacksmith, his mother - a former textile worker – stayed at home as a housekeeper. The painter went through a local municipal school, a nearby town school and in 1939 he became to be apprenticed to a kettle-smith in Vítkovice Ironworks in Ostrava, where he worked for some time after.
During the 2nd World War at the time of the Protektorate of Bohemia nad Moravia he was send to forced labour for the German Imperial. Thanks to his workmen´s job in heavy industry he was made digging trenches at nearby Trojanovice at Frenštát just among the last workers on New Year´s Eve in 1944. He found there a whole life friend – famous writer Bohuš Strnadel, known with a literary pseudonym Četyna. Strnadel brought an interest of history of the people living in Beskydy region to Jaromír Fajkus life.
From the end of the 2nd World War till 1947 the painter worked again in Vítkovice Ironworks in Ostrava. At that time he became to attend some evening courses of drawing, descriptive geometry and Russian. He also made his knowledge of history deeper while actual military service in the Military Historical Institution in Prague from 1947 to 1949 where he had an opportunity to get acquainted with historical documents in wider extent. He attended the evening courses of drawing there, too. After completing the actual military service he was shortly employed as a designer in Stavoprojekt in Prague from 1949 to 1950.
In 1950 he took up the State Course for preparation of workers for entering a university – art branch in Liberec. The teachers from the Academy of Art picked up talented students from that course. Jaromír Fajkus was chosen as one of them and started his studies at Academy of Art in Prague in 1951 at national artist Jan Želibský and academic painter Karel Minář. After a preparation and a year education at Academy he was as extremely talented send to study painting and art in Leningrad.
So in 1953 the painter left for Leningrad (today Sankt Petersburg). He became studies again from the first grade at the Repin´s Institute of the Academy of Art of the USSR. For six years every morning the painter went out to Něva embankment and followed with his steps the ships flowing from the harbour´s arms to the endeless icy sea. From the studios of professors R. R. Frenc, Ivanovskij, Belousov and the national artist of the USSR Mojsejenko he went to visit the Leningrad Ermitage every free afternoon to study the paintings of masters of the French impressionism and great Russian realistic painters.
At the holiday he used to travel after art to Moskva and around Leningrad, he made some trips to the Ukraine, Lotyšsko, Estonia, Krym, Kavkaz and on the longest journey he went to the Middle Asia. With a box of paints and a sketch block he looked for and found plenty of themes to which even came back later to use in an art work.
One of the strongest impressions from Samarkand was meeting great Russian painter Zinaida M. Kovalevska. Jaromír Fajkus was amazed by the old huge ruins of monumental buildings from the 14th or 15th century, oriental bazaar, knees-bending sellers or ultramarine sky over the evening Samarkand. All those pictures set in painter´s mind and his paintings forever.
After completing his studies in Leningrad Jaromír Fajkus graduated so called „an honorable year“ at the Academy of Art in Prague at national artist Karel Souček.
In 1960 he married and settled in Havířov where he as a free artist created art work in his studio. He painted Russian and Middle Asia themes, figure situation paintings, women, girl and children´s portraits, flowers and bouquets, still life, Moravian, Silesian and Šumava landscape, fine women´s nude. The means of his visual creation were mostly classical oil painting in a realistic or impressionistic style, he made up excelent grafic lists, he devoted his art work also to mosaic, vitrage and sgrafito.
Jaromír Fajkus made a lot of study journeys into - at that time – possibly reachable destinations – USSR (the Soviet Union), Yugoslavia, Eastern Germany, Poland, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia.
Beside his own art work he also organised and led some local art courses at the place where he stayed, e.g. in Frenštát pod Radhoštěm, Frýdlant upon Ostravice, Havířov, Petřvald.
He was always willing to take part in a friendly meeting to talk about fine art, painting, about the countries he travelled through, about the history of Beskydy people and his own experiences. Many times he talked about it to the pupils and the teachers at schools where he was invited.Jaromír Fajkus organised many individual art exhibitions or participated in a group of painters exhibitions, his name is mentioned in a few special printed publications about the artists of Beskydy region. In 2009 he obtained Honor document for wholelife work from town mayor of Havirov.
From 1959 he was a member of SČVSU (the Union of Czechoslovak Artists) in Ostrava.
From 1963 to 1973 - after closing down the Union - he joined Tvůrčí skupina Bezruč (the Creative Group Bezruč – members: Drozd, Držkovic,Fajkus, Havel, Holas, Holub, Kocúrková, Kubová, Majer, Podešva, Salichová, Swider, Šrámek, Terš, Wünsche).
From 1973 he was a member of SUS Opava (the Association of Silesian Artist Opava).
From 1989 he was also a member of association Oslava (an organization of UVU - the Union of Fine Art).
Some famous artists belonged among his friends as poet Bohuš Strnadel, so called Četyna, uncle – painter Ferdyš Duša, Max Švabinský´s daughter Zuzana Švabinská – she mentioned Jaromír Fajkus in her book – and other writers and painters who he was during his life in touch with.
Painter´s activities were marked with hard illness in 1981 and later also for his increasing age the painter devoted his time more to individual work in his studio in Havířov.
Jaromír Fajkus brought up with his wife one son and two daughters and his heritage also lives in two grandsons and three granddaughters. The painter was always the well of experience and life wisdom for his family. He briliantly jointed his thoughts with great historical knowledge which study was his whole life hobby.
Academic painter Jaromír Fajkus died 30th July 2009 in his 85 and is buried in his hometown Frýdlant upon Ostravice.