French amateur puppeteer whose role was essential for the recognition of this art and the establishment of its principal guidelines, both in France and internationally. In 1941, during World War II, the young Jacques Félix along with a few friends decided to break away from the doldrums of their environment by travelling to the various Ardennes summer camps, performing stories with a few rudimentary puppets. The young friends soon separated in order to avoid mandatory work details imposed by the occupying forces, but in 1945, reassembled to create the amateur company Petits Comédiens de Chiffons (Little Rag Actors).
Even more than his work, the passion that animated Jacques Félix made him one of the fundamental personalities of French and international puppetry in the 20th century. Very involved in the economic and cultural life of the Champagne-Ardennes region, he put into place events and factors that led to the rise of the city of Charleville-Mézières as a specific place in the evolution of an entire art form. In 1961, encouraged by puppeteer professionals, UNIMA, and the citizens of the region, Félix was able to create the Festival Mondial des Théâtres de Marionnettes (International Puppet Theatre Festival) that would soon become a world famous triennial (and later biennial) event (organized by the Petits Comédiens de Chiffons).
That same year (1961), Jacques Félix also played an active role in the creation of UNIMA-France (see THEMAA). In 1981, he created the Institut International de la Marionnnette (IIM; International Institute of Puppetry), and became its president, and in 1987, he established the École Nationale Supérieure des Arts de la Marionnette (ESNAM). He also held the position of General Secretary of UNIMA International for a period of twenty years (1980-2000).