Members of the Just Stop Oil movement damaged the protective glass of Diego Velazquez's painting “Venus with a Mirror”, which is exhibited at the National Gallery in London. Activists published a video of the performance on Twitter.
In the video, a 22-year-old girl named Hanan and a 20-year-old boy named Harrison hit the glass of the painting with a hammer five times, after which they turn to gallery visitors and say that “it’s time to stop the oil.”
“[Development of new fields] of oil and gas kills millions. If we love art, if we love life, if we love our families, we should just stop the oil,” the young man said.
After the action, Hanan and Harrison were detained.
🦺 Hanan, 22, has just smashed the glass covering the Rokeby Venus, originally slashed by the suffragettes in 1914.
💬 Before taking action, she said: "Women did not get the vote by voting; it is time for deeds not words. It it is time to Just Stop Oil. As a kid I saw myself…
— Just Stop Oil (@JustStop_Oil) November 6, 2023
In 1914, the painting “Venus with a Mirror” was cut up by British suffragist Mary Richardson. The canvas was restored and soon returned to the gallery.
Activists of the Just Stop Oil movement oppose the development of new mineral deposits. A year ago, they poured tomato soup on the painting by the Dutch artist Van Gogh “Sunflowers,” also exhibited at the National Gallery in London.