Visions of the Decade: Koudelka’s Invasion 68: Prague
All Photographs © Josef Koudelka. Behind the CKD Praha factory, looking towards the Hloubetin district.
In a recent survey leading up to the release of the 30th anniversary issue of PDN, readers voted Josef Koudelka‘s Invasion 68: Prague (Aperture, 2008) one of the most influential books of the decade. The book (which has been published in in ten countries, most recently in Russia) gathers more than 250 of the photographs Koudelka took in August 1968 during the Prague Spring, when Warsaw Pact tanks invaded Prague and Soviet soldiers clashed with citizens and protesters. Koudelka had just returned from Romania where he was working on his long-term project photographing gypsies when the invasion began. His photographs of the occupation, the first reportage work he had done, were smuggled out of the country and distributed by Magnum Photos. Some of the work was published with credit to an unknown Czech photographer, and Koudelka was given a Robert Capa Award anonymously.
People in the suburbs watch the occupying forces arrive.
Defending the Czechoslovak Radio Building
At the Czechoslovak Radio building, Vinohradská Avenue.
On 22 and 23 August, Wenceslas Square was cleared of people.
Distribution of anti-occupation news.
A newspaper distributor holds a blood-stained copy of Svobodné slovo.