Born on 15th June, 1969 in Catania (Italy) Master Gianfranco Pace started studying Chen style Taijiquan when he was a teenager under the guidance of M. Shi Rong Hua, who instructed him with a ‘family’ sort of teaching. After about ten years of learning from him, in 1998 he travelled through China seeking the effective qualities of Taijiquan. Under the advice of his teacher, in 2001 he went to Chenjagou, cradle of Taijiquan, to study with M. Chen Xiao Xing, living in his home. On his return to Italy, he attended the seminars of several Masters of the 19th generation of the Chen family.
In 2003 Gianfranco founded the ITKA, International Taijiquan Kung Fu Association, presenting the entire traditional technical program, enriched by other exercises and his own method of teaching developed from his own practical experience.
His knowledge and abilities have led to him being invited to teach in different countries all around the world. For five consecutive years he has taught in New York, as well as holding seminars in Florida, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Chile, Argentina and Brasil. In the latter four countries he was able to establish ITKA schools for South America.
In 2015 he was appointed by the Italian Federation of Wushu Kung Fu as Master responsible for the entire field of Taijiquan.
In June 2016 he presided over an international seminar together with Gran Master Yang Jun, great grandchild of Yang Cheng Fu, direct descendent of Yang Lu Chan. The theme of the seminar was: ‘Chen style meets Yang style’. In March 2017 he presented another international seminar together with master Zhou ZhongFu (Wu Style) in Genova.
In 2009 he carried out the dream of building a school where it is possible to study and live for long or short periods: the ITKA’s main school is situated close to Catania. This allowed a new project, called ITKA College, to be started and now many people from many countries (even from Scotland), are studying intensively in order to reach a high level in Taijiquan.
Although having been been invited by several exponents of the Chen Style’s XIX generation to represent their school, Master Pace has never accepted these requests in order to continue developing the ITKA System. This a traditional and innovative method recognised in many countries all around the world, and since 2017 even in China, when the Wang Academy invited him to teach along with M. Wang Zhi Xiang and at the Sanya International Camp.