Josef Koudelka’s ‘Invasion of Prague, 1968’

By Lisa-Marie Griffith

josef koudelka Come up close and examine the 1968  invasion of Prague by visiting the Josef Koudelka exhibition currently running at the Gallery of Photography in Meeting House square, Temple Bar, Dublin. This superb exhibition of the most iconic images of this historical event show the shock and horror of the population of Prague on 20/21 August when Warsaw Pact troops and tanks poured into and occupied their city. Housed in the largest room in the gallery, the exhibition projects about 60 images onto a huge wall; the scale of the images allow for the detail of the city streetscape, the size of the invasion force, and the fear that this invasion force prompted in these citizens, to be fully realised.  Koudelka, who originally published the photographs anonymously and retained his anonymity for sixteen years, narrates his own account of the invasion. While I was familiar with some of Koudelka’s images from the coverage given to the fortieth anniversary of the invasion last year, I still found this exhibition emotional and moving. These photos bring you as close as is imaginable to the events of August 1968. This exhibition runs until the 26 July and entrance is free.

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