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Václav Havel

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Image of Václav Havel

Yousuf Karsh
Canadian, born Armenia, 1908–2002

Václav Havel


Object Type: Photograph
15 7/8 in. x 17 3/8 in. (40.32 cm x 44.13 cm)
Medium and Support: Gelatin silver print on paper
Accession Number: 2013.0005.0024

Credit Line: Gift of Estrellita Karsh, in honor of Mark M. Johnson, and in memory of Yousuf Karsh
Copyright: © Estate of Yousuf Karsh

Václav Havel (1936–2011)

A Czech humanist, playwright, and non-violent political dissident turned democratic politician, Havel was voted fourth in a 2005 global poll of the world's top intellectuals. After the Velvet Revolution brought a bloodless end to Czech communism, Havel was elected president of the Czech and Slovak Federation in 1990. He resigned in 1992 but was then elected the first President (1993–2003) of the new Czech Republic. Havel has won the U.S. Presidential Medal of Freedom (2003) and the Order of Canada (2003), among many other accolades. Karsh made his portrait the same year he was first elected president of Czechoslovakia.

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