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Climate Change Activists Glue Themselves To Vincent Van Gogh Artwork To Protest Against Oil

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Climate Change Activists Glue Themselves To Vincent Van Gogh Artwork To Protest Against Oil

Climate change activists have glued themselves to a Vincent van Gogh painting in London.

Louis McKechnie and Emily Brocklebank, who were dressed in orange t-shirts that said 'JUST STOP OIL', stuck themselves to the 'Peach Trees in Blossom' artwork in the Courtauld Gallery.

They are a part of a climate activism group that is campaigning for...yes you guessed it, the world to stop relying on oil.

A statement posted on the Just Stop Oil website says they hope their stunt will encourage companies to stop 'new oil and gas and for art institutions to join them in civil resistance'.

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Credit: Just Stop Oil
Credit: Just Stop Oil

"I still love this painting, but I love my friends and family more, I love nature more," he said in a statement.

"I value the future survival of my generation more highly than my public reputation.

“The scientists are saying we need to end fossil fuel licensing and the government is pouring sand in their ears. I’m not willing to be marched to my death by the fossil fuel companies and their government puppets."

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Louis believes that it's immoral for 'cultural institutions to stand by and watch whilst our society descends into collapse'.

He's calling on galleries and artists to take more of a stand against this.

Brocklebank said she chose to take part in the stunt because she feels she 'can’t live in a bubble of normality when society is collapsing around us and people in the global south are suffering so much'.

"Billionaires are getting richer whilst nurses queue at food banks, tens of millions of people across the world are starving and half the world’s population is exposed to extreme danger from heatwaves, floods, fires and famine," she said in a statement.

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Credit: Nick Moore / Alamy Stock Photo
Credit: Nick Moore / Alamy Stock Photo

"Meanwhile the art establishment, the politicians and the fossil fuel companies look the other way.

"Art is so important, it captures history and a moment in time, but artists and the art establishment are failing us by focusing on the wrong things.

"We need everyone to focus on the government’s genocidal plans to allow fossil fuel companies to drill for more oil. This is one of the greatest injustices in history. We must resist.”

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The duo wanted to highlight how the Provence region in the south of France is experiencing a drought after a lack of rainfall over the last few months.

It wasn't the only protest from the Just Stop Oil group.

Five activists were arrested at the Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow after they were accused of spraying paint on the walls and floors of the gallery.

They also glued themselves to the frame of a 19th Century landscape painting by Horatio McCulloch that is titled 'My heart’s in the Highlands'.

Featured Image Credit: Just Stop Oil

Stewart Perrie
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