Opening of the exhibition entitled ‘Jan palach ‘69’ and a screening of the film ‘Burning Bush’.

The exhibition tells the story of the dramatic student protest in Prague against the Soviet invasion in 1968 and the progressive normalization of Stalin. On January 16, 1969, at Prague’s Wenceslas Square a Prague student, Jan Palach, immolated himself to express his protest against the invasion of Czechoslovakia  He presented the reasons for his decision in a letter signed “Torch No. 1”. He wanted to make his countrymen reflect on the need to oppose against standardization and to build resistance against the censorship and propaganda. The exhibition consists of 23 panels and is a combination of photographs with commentaries and copies of official and private documents related to the dramatic protest of the Czech student. The exhibition reflects the atmosphere of the neo-Stalinist period of standardization in the Czech Republic and also refers to the immolation of Ryszard Siwiec. A plaster death mask of Jan Palach made by sculptor Olbram Zoubek constitutes an important and moving part of the exhibition. The exhibition was open until the end of April.

The opening of the exhibition was followed by a screening of the film entitled ‘Burning Bush’ by Agnieszka Holland.