Josef Koudelka. Courtesy of Aperture Foundation.
On the occasion of the fortieth anniversary of the invasion of Prague, Aperture Gallery presents Invasion 68: Prague, an exhibition and catalog of Josef Koudelka’s remarkable work made during that one week. In 1968, Koudelka was a young photographer chronicling the theater, and the lives of gypsies, but he had never photographed a news event. That all changed on the night of August 21, when Warsaw Pact tanks invaded the city of Prague, ending the short-lived political freedom in Czechoslovakia that came to be known as the Prague Spring. In the midst of the turmoil of the Soviet-led invasion, Koudelka took to the streets to document this critical moment. These powerful photographs anonymously reached Magnum Photos in New York and earned the Robert Capa award.
This exhibition, coproduced with Magnum Photos, will feature large-scale prints of this work, many of the images have never been seen before, with compelling texts by Czech historians. Both images and texts are taken from Koudelka’s latest stunning Aperture monograph of the same name, which includes 250 photographs chosen by the artist from his archive. Coinciding with the show at Aperture Gallery, Pace/Mac Gill Gallery jointly presents an exhibition opening the same day of Koudelka’s most iconic vintage and recent prints.
Josef Koudelka (born in Moravia, Czech Republic, 1938) is the recipient of the Prix Nadar, Grand Prix National de la Photographie, Grand Prix Cartier-Bresson, and Hasselblad Foundation International Award in Photography. Major exhibitions of his work have been held at the Museum of Modern Art and the International Center of Photography, New York; Hayward Gallery, London; Stedelijk Museum of Modern Art, Amsterdam; and Palais de Tokyo, Paris. In 2007, Aperture published his bestselling self-titled monograph. He is a member of Magnum Photos.