Czech Mate: Photographer Kept His Freedom Under Communist Rule

Today I ran across a couple of web sites about Miroslav Tichý, a photographer who lived in Czechoslovakia (now the Czech Republic) during the Cold War.  For kids today, the Cold War means nothing – but it was a brutal totalitarian government that was in league with the Soviet Union after World War II.

The amazing thing is NOT his photographs, which are stalkerazzi in nature and almost a little bit freaky.  But the amazing thing is that he was able to take the pictures at all.  He was seen as an enemy of the state, mainly for being a non-conformist (artist).  He was put in work camps for many years.  After his release, he built his own camera and darkroom equipment.  Who knows how he got film, paper and chemicals (other needed supplies in the pre-digital age.)

This guy would make a great photography project, just be selective of which photos you use in the classroom.

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