António Gaio (1925-2015)

António Gaio, founder of Cooperativa Nascente, the newspaper Maré Viva and director of CINANIMA – International Animated Film Festival of Espinho for over 35 years, has passed away last night.

Although his main occupation was as a banker, the spirit and love for culture began to emerge quite early. Thus, it is no wonder he has engaged in many cultural oriented activities: he was director of sports clubs such as Sporting Clube de Espinho and Associação Académica de Espinho for 28 years and, in 1945, he founded the gymnastic section of Académica de Espinho. He also ventured through journalism and has held editorial and management positions in the local press in newspapers such as Defesa de Espinho and Maré Viva, which he founded.

He took over the Festival in 1980 and worked tirelessly to make CINANIMA an internationally recognized event. As director of the Festival, he integrated twice the jury of the Instituto do Cinema, Audiovisual e Multimédia (now ICA). In 1997, he received the Cultural Merit Commendation, awarded by the President of the Republic of Portugal. In 2000, he published a pioneering book, “History of Portuguese Animation Cinema – contributions” and in 2012 he was hommaged at the Centro Multimeios of Espinho. Since then, its movie theater has been named after him: “Sala António Gaio”.

For his contribution to the Festival, to the city of Espinho and to the animated film national and international, our immense and heartfelt gratitude.