Is there any former student of the Prague Faculty of Arts who would like to walk its corridors with us during the Christmas calm?
For the rest of you – the faculty building is on a square that used to be called Krasnoarmějců, which is the Czech equivalent of the Russian army’s name in Russian. Since the Velvet Revolution, the square is named after Jan Palach, a former student at the Faculty of Arts who burned himself to death in January 1969 in protest against the occupation of Czechoslovakia by Warsaw Pact armies.
On the faculty building (last photo) there is now a death mask of Jan Palach, which was created by sculptor Olbram Zoubek on the day Jan Palach died – three days after his act.
In 1969, the mask was momentarily exhibited in a niche in the faculty corridor – where the statue of the first Czechoslovak president Tomáš Garrigue Masaryk is now (last but one photo). Until November 1989 the statue of V. I. Lenin was in this niche…