- Title: A crude performance: Semi-naked climate activists protest BP art sponsorship
- Date: 20th October 2019
- Summary: PROTESTERS HOLDING SIGN WITH BP LOGO AND WRITING READING (English): "#NGPDropBP" / PROTESTERS WRAPPED IN TOWELS, CROWD TAKING PHOTOGRAPHS PROTESTERS HOLDING SIGN WITH WRITING READING (English): "Burning Premises" AND BP LOGO LEAFLET ADVERTISING EXHIBITION ON FLOOR VARIOUS OF PEOPLE IN EXHIBITION ROOM MAN LOOKING AT ARTWORK ON DISPLAY WOMAN TAKING PHOTO OF ARTWORK ON DISPLAY POSTER READING (English): "BP PORTRAIT AWARD 2019" / PEOPLE STANDING IN LINE TO ENTER WRITING ON WALL READING (English): "BP PORTRAIT AWARD 2019" WRITING ON WALL READING (English): "30 YEARS SPONSORED BY BP" SCREEN ADVERTISING EXHIBITION VARIOUS EXTERIORS OF NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY
- Embargoed: 3rd November 2019 17:36
- Keywords: climate change protest Extinction Rebellion climate change protest BP protest gallery protest
- Location: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
- City: LONDON, ENGLAND, UNITED KINGDOM
- Country: United Kingdom
- Topics: Art,Environment,Climate Politics
- Reuters ID: LVA004B1WGBWN
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: CONTAINS NUDITY
Visitors to a London gallery were treated to an impromptu performance on Sunday (October 20) when three semi-naked climate activists were doused with mock crude oil in a protest against arts sponsorship by British oil company BP.
The unauthorised stunt at the National Portrait Gallery capped a two-week wave of actions by civil disobedience movement Extinction Rebellion, which led to more than 3,300 arrests in London and cities around the world, the group said.
Activists spread a white sheet over the floor of the main hall of the gallery's Ondaatje wing before two women and a man wearing only underwear adopted foetal positions on the covering.
Protesters then slowly doused the prone performers with washable black liquid as activist Eden Rickson read a poem asking the gallery to stop accepting sponsorship money from BP.
The National Portrait Gallery said BP's support for its Portrait Award encouraged the work of artists around the world and enabled free admission to an exhibition, which had drawn more than 300,000 visitors this year.
"The ongoing debate around BP's sponsorship of the arts raises important questions about both the environment and arts funding, and we are listening carefully to voices on all sides," the gallery said in a statement.
(Production: Henry Nicholls, Kristian Brunse, Louisa Naks)
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