Updates: 12/1/2021 8:10 PM
Released: 1.12.2021, 20:10
Prague – Breakthroughs in the political life of former Czechoslovak and Czech President Vaclav Havel, his meetings with world statesmen and fragments of privacy are shown in an exhibition that began tonight in Gallery 1. Authors, photographer Alan Pajer and Tomas Oliva, who worked in the President’s Office Republic, organized it on the occasion of the anniversary of the death of Václav Havel, which will be ten years after December 18. Pajer was one of the photographers who often accompanied the president. However, the exhibition also includes films by other creators.
The exhibition is divided into several parts. The first captures Havel and his close associates in 1989, especially during the Velvet Revolution and when he took office. Other blocks are reminiscent of, for example, the meeting with the former US State Department Madeleine Albright, the Dalai Lama, Queen Elizabeth II, Pope John Paul II. or former US President Bill Clinton, but also celebrities like the Rolling Stones or musician Bob Dylan.
As the “golden nail” of the exhibition, Pajer described the related images with the Czech Republic’s accession to the North Atlantic Alliance, which, according to the photographer, was an important goal of Havel’s efforts. Pajer noted that Havel promoted the idea that the Czechia would gain freedom only if, as a sovereign, confident democratic country, it integrated into existing structures such as the European Union and NATO, instead of leaving them. Pajer, who had known Havel for 30 years, also said that the concept of the exhibition should emphasize his work at Prague Castle.
“He fascinated me for being hardworking and wise. He was a man who had an idea and went for it,” Havel recalled the photographer. “What I like most about him is that he just didn’t say how it should be, but he always said how it should be and gave a person hope in life,” he said.
Václav Havel was remembered at today’s opening by, for example, Senate Vice President Jiří Oberfalzer, who also worked in the Office of the President of the Republic, or the wife of former Havel Spokesman and current Deputy Mayor of Prague 1 Eva Špačková (both ODS).
The exhibition will run until January 29 next year.