Eco-Vandals Pour Oil on Gustav Klimt Painting

I have always been captivated by the art of Gustav Klimt, so I was enraged to hear that so-called “climate activists” had attacked one of his renowned paintings. On Nov. 15, 2022, two members of the eco-extremist group Letzte Generation Österreich (Last Generation Austria), raided the Leopold Museum in Vienna, Austria. One carried a 2-Quart rubber hot water bottle filled with viscous black oil; he kept it hidden beneath his shirt.

Last Generation Austria goons deface Gustav Klimt painting. Photo: Letzte Generation Österreich.

They entered the museum and quickly made their way to Tod und Leben (Death and Life), a painting created by Gustav Klimt in the early 1900s. The hoodlum with the hot water bottle pulled it out from under his shirt, unplugged it, and hurled the black oil onto the artwork (it was protected by a glass shield). As the oil dripped to the floor, the vandals prepared to glue their hands to the oily picture frame—a museum guard intervened; he wrestled with the offender who chucked the petroleum, and successfully removed him from the gallery.

That left the vandal who managed to glue himself to the painting’s frame—he was left bleating “Stop destroying humanity with fossil fuels. We are rushing towards a climate hell.” Another guard entered the room and tried to stop someone from video-recording the spectacle. Since the Last Generation gang uploaded a video of their assault on Klimt’s painting to their Twitter account, it can be assumed the videographer was also a member of Last Generation.

The Austrian police finally arrived and the eco-extremists were removed from the museum but not arrested. A police spokesman said the arrestees were considered subjects of “a complaint for material damage and disturbance of public order.” That should teach ‘em a lesson, eh?

On the day of the vandalism the museum was free due to the largesse of OMV, the Austrian multinational petrochemical company headquartered in Vienna. No doubt this triggered Last Generation Austria, who thought it appropriate to splatter their targeted painting with oil.

Leopold Museum guard struggles with Last Generation eco-vandal. Photo: Letzte Generation Österreich.

In the aftermath of their attack, Last Generation Austria released a Twitter statement regarding their criminal actions: “URGENT: Klimt’s ‘Death and Life’ in the Leopold Museum covered in oil. People of the last generation poured oil on the Klimt painting ‘Death and Life’ in the Leopold Museum today. New oil and gas wells are a death sentence for humanity.”

While Last Generation Austria boasted of having “poured oil on the Klimt painting,” corporate media hacks reported the “climate activists” were alleged to have poured: “liquid,” “dye,” “black paint,” “black liquid,” or a “black substance” on the artwork. It’s embarrassing that the media calls the culprits who sullied Klimt’s painting “climate activists,” but then, the once respected profession of “journalist” has became an embarrassment.

These “climate activists” are not engaged in non-violent activism, instead they pursue outright vandalism. Truth demands that they are accurately identified for what they are… eco-vandals. It should come as no surprise that the anti-art vandalism of these miserabilists has in fact decreased sympathy for their crusade. I fear they are evolving into the eco-terrorists of the future.

An odd thing about the eco-extremist war on art, is how the vandals make unschooled statements that attempt to link their acts with the art they deface.

When Just Stop Oil vandals glued themselves to a copy of Leonardo Da Vinci’s The Last Supper in London’s Royal Academy of Arts, they said climate collapse would bring famine and the last supper for the world. When Italy’s Ultima Generazione (Last Generation) glued themselves to the frame of Botticelli’s Spring in the Uffizi Gallery, they said climate collapse would keep us from seeing spring days. With Klimt’s Death and Life, their statement was oil is a death sentence for humanity.

The International Council of Museums (ICOM) located in Germany, reacted to the eco-extremist war on art by drafting a statement condemning the vandalizing of art museums for political causes. Directors of 92 major international art museums have signed the statement, among the signatories are The Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York), Gallerie degli Uffizi (Florence), and the Detroit Institute of Arts. The statement in part reads:

“In recent weeks, there have been several attacks on works of art in international museum collections. The activists responsible for them severely underestimate the fragility of these irreplaceable objects, which must be preserved as part of our world cultural heritage. As museum directors entrusted with the care of these works, we have been deeply shaken by their risky endangerment.

Museums are places where people from a wide variety of backgrounds can engage in dialogue and which therefore enable social discourse. In this sense, the core tasks of the museum as an institution – collecting, researching, sharing and preserving – are now more relevant than ever. We will continue to advocate for direct access to our cultural heritage. And we will maintain the museum as a free space for social communication.”

Gustav Klimt painted Tod und Leben (Death and Life) between 1910 and 1911, and later repainted and revised the work between the years 1915-1916. Klimt showed the work publicly for the first time at the International Art Exhibition in Rome of 1911, winning a gold medal for his creation.

“Tod und Leben” (Death and Life). Gustav Klimt. Oil on canvas. First painted between 1910 and 1911, the artist later revised the canvas between the years 1915-1916. Photo courtesy Leopold Museum.

Gustav Klimt was a founding member of the 1897 Vienna Session movement. Along and his fellow Secessionists they challenged the academic art of the day. In 1898 the group began publishing its own journal, Ver Sacrum (Latin for “Sacred Spring”). The journal advanced Secessionist ideas, and in its first issue the Austrian writer and playwright Hermann Bahr delineated their principles:

“Our art is not a fight of modern artists against old ones, but the promotion of arts against the peddlers who pass for artists and have a commercial interest that prevents art from flourishing. Commerce or art, that is the issue before our Secession. It is not an aesthetic debate, but a confrontation between two states of the spirit.”

Written in January 1898, Bahr’s pearls of wisdom reach into the present, they have become a maxim for thoughtful contemporary artists. I’ve seen a number of Klimt’s paintings over the years, and was always impressed by his “impasto” technique; paint applied by brushes heavy with paint and applied in thick brush strokes. It’s not easy to see this in reproductions, where his works appear smooth and polished. However, up-close his paintings are full of rough and aggressive textures, but always controlled by a masterful hand.

Detail of Gustav Klimt’s “Death and Life.” Photo: Steve Zucker/Smarthistory

In 2012 my wife and I visited the Getty Center in Los Angeles to see the exhibit Gustav Klimt, The Magic of Line; it was a memorable and popular exhibit. However, there was one historic oversight in the show I couldn’t get out of my head; it had to do with the Getty’s captioning of Klimt’s preliminary sketches for his Faculty Paintings.

In 1894 the Austrian Ministry of Education gave Klimt a commission to design ceiling paintings for the University of Vienna (founded in 1365). Klimt was asked to create paintings symbolizing Medicine, Jurisprudence, and Philosophy. The works became knows as the his Faculty Paintings. The University was outraged by the finished paintings, viewing them as pornographic. Klimt returned the commission money and sold off the three 13-foot-tall paintings. Eventually Philosophy and Jurisprudence would end up in the collection of Klimt’s patron August Lederer, and Medicine became part of the Austrian Gallery collection.

Detail of “Tod und Leben” by Gustav Klimt.

My wife noticed a discrepancy in the wall text caption for the displayed Faculty Paintings sketches; it said the paintings had been “destroyed” in 1945 but the exhibit book said the paintings were “burned in a fire.” No other details were mentioned… but what else happened in 1945?

The question of who destroyed the Faculty Paintings by fire, and why they did so, drove me to write a 2012 essay titled: Gustav Klimt: At The Getty.

My article details Austria’s 1938 invasion by the Nazis, and how they seized art treasures owned by Jews; the art collections of August Lederer and the Austrian Gallery were stolen by the Nazis. Many works by Klimt were included, not because he was Jewish (he was not), but because he cooperated with, and had an affinity for the Jewish people. Moreover, the Nazis condemned modern painting and sculpture as degenerate art, because, they said, it was influenced by Bolsheviks and Jews.

The Nazis hid a large part of their stolen art treasures in Immendorf Castle, located in Lower Austria. When Hitler committed suicide and the Soviet Red Army captured Berlin in 1945, the Nazi regime disintegrated. To prevent their stolen art from falling into the hands of their enemies, the Nazi SS set charges and blew up Immendorf Castle, the resulting fire obliterated the seized collections of August Lederer, the Austrian Gallery, the Museum for Applied Arts of Vienna, and many of Klimt’s works—including the three Faculty Paintings.

It’s a certainty the incurious eco-vandals of Letzte Generation Österreich are pig-ignorant when it comes to the Nazi confiscation and destruction of Gustav Klimt’s wondrous paintings and drawings. The ignoramuses of Last Generation without a doubt think themselves cleaver, virtuous, and morally justified in pouring oil on a Klimt masterpiece.

Regardless, people around the world when seeing that big, oily black splotch covering Klimt’s painting, will think of how the Nazis desecrated art and persecuted artists. I can’t see how Last Generation can avoid that comparison.

“They pursue outright vandalism.” Photo: Letzte Generation Österreich.

“The Scream.” Edvard Munch. Oil paint, pastel, tempera on cardboard. 1893.

UPDATE: On Nov. 11, 2022, three eco-vandals from the Norwegian group “Stopp oljeletinga” (Stop Oil Exploration), attacked Edvard Munch’s 1893 masterpiece The Scream housed at the National Museum of Norway.

Two vandals attempted to glue themselves to the painting while shouting “I scream for people dying” and “I scream when lawmakers ignore science,” while a third video-taped the assault. The three vandals were women from Finland, Denmark, and Germany.

Museum security guards prevented the vandals from gluing themselves to the painting’s frame; all three were arrested.

A spokes-goon for the group told the Associated Press, “We are campaigning against ‘Scream’ because it is perhaps Norway’s most famous painting.” Yeah, right… and this artist filing his report in Lost Angeles, says… “I scream against barbarians who vandalized art!

Veteran’s Day in America, 2022.

November 11, 2022 is Veteran’s Day in America, but you’d hardly know it by reading the corporate press; there’s not a single mention of it on the “Google News” web page. To honor the veterans of all wars fought by the United States, Veteran’s Day is celebrated annually in November. It is a day of reflection, contemplation, and gratefulness. Many fought and persevered, numerous others joined the fallen, we should hold them all in the highest esteem.

Most often the battles were a righteous cause, sometimes they were misguided, or even dare I say, immoral. Even so, from the US Civil War to Iraq, our soldiers sacrificed, bled, and died for what they believed was the struggle for liberty under the banner of freedom. There was nobility in that belief, even as it was betrayed by the “eternal war” cabal that roosts in Washington D.C.

Remember, it was the Republican President Dwight “Ike” Eisenhower that issued a dire warning to the American people in his farewell speech from the White House on January 17, 1961:

“We must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists, and will persist.”

What would ol’ Ike have thought of the forever wars of Vietnam, Afghanistan, and Iraq? Trillions in profits were made on the production and sale of sophisticated armaments. Millions of people perished in those catastrophes; including the deaths of thousands of American soldiers. Each war ended in complete tragedy and disaster for the US due to the venality and corruption in Washington D.C. And yet, here we stand once again, ready for war with Russia over Ukraine; only this time Mr. Potato Head will march the troops to the glorious battleground.

I’m old enough to remember the Vietnam war as it unfolded, it was a war that shaped my consciousness and world view. I started to read about Vietnam in 1963 when I was 10-years-old, and by the time I was a teenager I was well versed in Vietnamese history and could tell you the names of Vietnamese political figures. The draft ended just weeks before I was old enough to be inducted; though I didn’t serve in the armed forces, I feel like a veteran of that war. I was obsessed with the conflict and its national and international implications.

“Vietnam War Dead.” Mark Vallen. Pen & ink. 1970. After Ron Cobb.

I’m illustrating this Veteran’s Day post with drawings from my high-school sketch book. The drawings were made in 1970 when I was 17-years-old; they exemplify my concerns and misgivings about the war. My Vietcong Guerrilla pencil sketch was based on a news clipping photo, and the pen drawing was after a cartoon by the fabulous Ron Cobb, who at the time I idolized as one of the best political cartoonists in the US; his works only appeared in underground newspapers.

This Veteran’s Day I’m left wondering, what do we remember about Nam? Do you recall the meaning of “fragging,” “punji sticks,” “Tiger cages,” “Rolling Thunder,” “Daisy Cutter,” or “Puff the Magic Dragon”? Who can tell me about the Buddhist crisis, Ngo Dinh Diem, Nguyen Cao Ky, or Madam Nguyen Thi Binh? What happened during the 1968 Tet Offensive, or My Lai? What was the National Liberation Front? Who were the ARVN?

“Vietcong Guerrilla.” Mark Vallen. Pencil on paper. 1970.

As Americans we should recognize that these expressions, names, and events are part of our history—but what do you say when the words draw a blank. The aphorism of “Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it,” is attributed to philosopher George Santayana. The words certainly apply to the Vietnam war, but to the Afghanistan and Iraq conflicts as well. They are also a caveat for US military action in Ukraine.

A fellow named Joseph Allen McDonald served in the US Navy and was trained as an “approach controller” for US Navy aircraft carriers at sea. In 1965 he received his honorable discharge, and ended up in Berkeley where he fell in with the flower power crowd and subsequently founded the psychedelic rock band, Country Joe and the Fish.

The band is best known for their anti-Vietnam war anthem, I Feel Like I’m Fixin’ To Die Rag, but in 1986, Country Joe as a solo performer put out Vietnam Experience, an album of songs about the Vietnam war from a soldier’s perspective. It is a sympathetic and surprising collection of songs; Agent Orange is a tear-jerker and Foreign Policy Blues is a dark, shell-shocked jingle. I decided to celebrate Veteran’s Day by publishing the words of Joe McDonald’s song Vietnam Never Again, which seems most fitting for those of us with historic amnesia and a zest for war in Ukraine.

I’l like to be a General, in the Pentagon
instead of a foot soldier, here in Vietnam
I’d like to be a Congressman in Washington D.C.
instead of at a firebase, surrounded by VC
I’d like to be a business man, selling guns and planes
instead of in this bunker with rounds coming in
I’d like to be the President, talking to the press
instead of here in Khe Sanh, with shrapnel in my chest

Ah Vietnam… you took my heart and mind
Ah Vietnam… you made me old before my time
Ah Vietnam… I still can’t explain
Ah Vietnam… if I should, maybe I could
do it all again.

I’d like to be a doctor, with a practice way down town
instead of standing here in blood, on the killing ground
I’d like to be an RN, in a quite nursing home
instead of with the wounded, hearing them scream and moan
I’d love to be an actor, in a film about Vietnam
instead I’m in this hole, with punji sticks in my arm
I’d like to be a Hippie, thinking love with prevail
instead of a grunt with an attitude, locked in the Long Bình Jail

Ah Vietnam… you took my heart and mind
Ah Vietnam… you made me old before my time
Ah Vietnam… I still can’t explain
Ah Vietnam… if I should, maybe I could,
never do it again.

Eco-Vandals Attack Warhol Campbell Soup Cans

On Nov. 8, 2022, two women from Stop Fossil Fuel Subsidies (SFFS) entered the National Gallery of Australia in Canberra, Australia, and vandalized a famed silkscreen print series by Andy Warhol, Campbell’s Soup I. One vandal used blue spray-paint to draw squiggles on the framed artworks, while the other vainly attempted to glue a small Stop Fossil Fuel Subsidies red banner to one of the damaged framed prints. What, no tomato soup?!

The museum had hung the ten prints in double rows, one above the other; the vandals were only able to reach the bottom row. After defacing the lower row of prints, the insufferables glued their right hands to the prints; one could be heard yelling: “We are in a climate emergency.” When confronted by museum security, the two pulled their hands off of the artworks before the glue could set and ran away like the cowards they are. The miscreants were not pursued nor arrested.

Vandals from “Stop Fossil Fuel Subsidies” prepare to glue their hands on Warhol prints as museum security calls for help. Photo: Stop Fossil Fuel Subsidies.

National Gallery staff took down the bottom row of prints to clean the frames and check for print damage. The museum told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation: “A protest has taken place at the National Gallery of Australia following similar incidents elsewhere in Australia and overseas.” The statement ended with the Gallery making clear it “does not wish to promote these actions and has no further comment.”

After their attack, the SFFS cadre, hoping to impress with their militant eloquence, commented from their Twitter account:

“Do you think Andy Warhol would have been proud? Stop pouring fuel on the fire. Choose a livable planet for all, over profits for a few. Stop Fossil Fuel Subsidies is highlighting the danger of capitalism by glueing onto Andy Warhol. Art depicting consumerism gone mad. While Australians starve, Government pays $22,000 a minute to subsidize fossil fuels.”

Like the rest of their comrades in the climate collapse cult, the Stop Fossil Fuel Subsidies group are a funereal bunch. The mirthless prose from their website sounds like the ranting of a death cult: “The old world is dying. We are in the last hour, the darkest hour. This world is being decimated before our eyes. We are in between moments.” These are the words used to recruit wackos to their cause.

Save the environment by destroying art! Eco-vandal glued to Warhol print. Photo: Stop Fossil Fuel Subsidies.

Stop Fossil Fuel Subsidies belongs to the so-called A22 Network, a loose-knit grouping of eco-fanatics that call themselves a “coalition of civil resistance organizations.”

It includes Just Stop Oil (UK), Letzte Generation (Germany), and Ultima Generazione (Italy), groups who have been raiding and vandalizing art museums since June 2022. Their strategy to stop government financial support of the natural gas and coal industries… is to trash art museums.

Warhol’s Campbell Soup Cans were initially 32 small paintings on canvas, each measuring 16 by 20 inches and depicting a soup can with a different name; Chicken Noodle, Tomato, Green Pea, Cream of Mushroom, et cetera (at the time Campbell’s was manufacturing 32 different soup flavors). In 1962 Andy Warhol (1928-1987) was a nobody when he showed these paintings at the Ferus Gallery in Los Angeles; it was his first solo exhibit. A handful of schmoes attended and Warhol never showed up. Not a single print was purchased; a New York showing of the prints was cancelled. If only that had been the end of Andy’s career.

“Campbell’s Soup Can (Tomato).” Andy Warhol. 1962. Painting on canvas, 20 by 16 inches. Sold for $9 million at Christie’s 2010 auction.

The name Warhol ultimately became synonymous with Pop Art. Art critics and aficionados have thought, and still think, that his early 60’s artworks depicting Brillo Boxes, Dollar Bills, Coca-Cola Bottles, the faces of celebrities, and yes… Campbell Soup cans, were marxian critiques of capitalism, or subversive takes on the “dullness and ambivalence of American culture.” Nothing could be further from the truth.

Warhol was apolitical. He worshiped celebrity and consumer culture, and his maxim was “business is the best art.” As for Campbell and Coca-Cola, he lived on the stuff and said as much. After his passing, Christie’s Auction house in 2010 sold a single Warhol Campbell Soup Can painting on canvas measuring 20 by 16 inches for $9 million. In 2022 Christie’s sold a Warhol silkscreen print of Marilyn Monroe titled Shot Sage Blue Marilyn for $195 million. Dirty rotters.

It should come as no surprise that I’m not a fan of Andy Warhol, I never was. His Pop Art was banal and empty. Andy perhaps said it best: “If you want to know all about Andy Warhol just look at the surface of my paintings and films and me, and there I am. There’s nothing behind it.” I always got a kick out of the brilliant art critic Robert Hughes, who said in his 2008 documentary The Mona Lisa Curse, that Warhol “was one of the stupidest people I’ve ever met in my life.”

My dislike of Andy Warhol aside, I hold even less regard for the joyless Stop Fossil Fuel Subsidies group and their medievalist anti-art friends in the climate cult. While I spurn Warhol’s Pop Art mediocrities, I recognize his place in the history of 20th Century art; like him or not, his works have a place in art museums. What does not belong in an art museum are hordes of half-witted, imbecilic eco-extremists defacing and sullying the world’s art masterpieces.

Eco-Vandals Attack Goya & Van Gogh Paintings

Predictably climate-extremists have attacked two more major art museums, as their campaign to coerce art institutions escalates. On Nov. 5, 2022, two members of the eco-extremist organization Extinction Rebellion walked into the Prado museum in Madrid, Spain. They entered Room 038 of the museum where the paintings La Maja Vestida (The Clothed Maja) and La Maja Desnuda (The Nude Maja) by Francisco Goya hang together as companion pieces.

One Extinction Rebellion vandal draws graffiti on the museum wall, the other glues herself to the frame of Goya’s painting “The Clothed Maja” (left). “The Nude Maja” is on the right. Photo: Futuro Vegetal.

One vandal graffitied the museum wall with +1,5°C… a reference to a goal the 2016 Paris Climate Agreement set on preventing the global temperature from rising beyond 1.5 degrees Celsius by the end of the century. Simultaneously the other vandal glued her right hand to the frame holding The Clothed Maja. After graffitiing the museum wall that vandal glued her right hand to the frame around The Nude Maja.

Members of Extinction Rebellion were responsible for the stunt, but the anti-art action was carried out under the nom de guerre of Futuro Vegetal (Vegetable Future). What a misanthropic but revelatory name for an eco-extremist group; “Yes, we struggle for Vegetable liberation, but human freedom, eh… not so much.”

Prado museum officials tweeted a denunciation of the attack: “We condemn the protest that took place in the museum. The works have not been damaged but the frames have suffered slight blemishes. We are working to get back to normal as quickly as possible. We reject endangering cultural heritage as a means of protest.”

As the vandalism unfolded police were called in. They arrested four individuals, the two who were video-taped vandalizing museum property and two “journalists” who just happened to be there “covering the protest” as the Goya paintings were assailed. All four are under investigation for crimes against the “artistic historical patrimony.” In Spain people who damage property of historic or artistic value can be jailed for at least six months. On Nov. 7, 2022, all four were released from custody.

“The Clothed Maja.” Francisco Goya. Oil on Canvas. 1800-1805.

On a personal note, I have visited Spain’s Prado museum. It truly is one of the greatest art museums in the world today. I recall standing before the Maja paintings in delight. Francisco Goya was and remains, one of my favorite artists—the last of the old master painters and the first of the moderns.

The dark, gloomy realism of Goya’s later works greatly influenced me, perhaps more than any other artist, and his grueling etching series Los Desastres de la Guerra (Disasters of War) showed me how art can make the most brutal subject a transformative expression of bewildering beauty.

I have boundless admiration for Goya, but for Futuro Vegetal… only the deepest contempt. In 1799 the praiseworthy Goya uttered words that described the invalorous and ill-informed of his day; his words can apply to the ignorant and misguided of our present—they certainly apply to the dullards of Extinction Rebellion: “The sleep of reason produces monsters.”

On Nov. 4, 2022 four young women from the eco-extremist group Ultima Generazione (Last Generation), entered the Palazzo Bonaparte museum in Rome, Italy. They surreptitiously carried cans of pea soup—can you guess why? To celebrate the 170th anniversary of the birth of Vincent Van Gogh, the museum had mounted an exhibit dedicated to the works of the Dutch artist, with 50 of his paintings on display. The hoodlums planned to target The Sower, the jewel of the collection.

“The Sower.” Vincent van Gogh. Oil on canvas. 1888.

Three of the eco-vandals surrounded Van Gogh’s 1888 masterpiece The Sower, and shouted end of the world slogans about climate apocalypse; they opened their soup cans and hurled pea soup onto the wondrous painting as the fourth vandal video-taped the criminal act. The three sat on the floor and glued their hands to the wall below the artwork.

Mercifully the painting had a glass covering for protection, but where was museum security? The eco-extremist war on art has been waging since June 2022; there have been waves of vandalism attacks mounted by climate zealots on museums and galleries. Art institutions should be fully alert and prepared to prevent and block these destructive actions.

In the aftermath of their soupy juvenile delinquent attack, Last Generation released a doomful statement, “Everything that we would have the right to see in our present and our future is being obscured by a real and imminent catastrophe, just as this pea puree has covered the work in the fields.” Yup, Last Generation members have pea puree for brains. Police arrested all four eco-extremists, but I have no details on charges or if they were released.

Last Generation eco-extremists glue their hands to the museum wall, as pea soup drips from Vincent van Gogh’s “The Sower.” Photo: social media.

The Sower was on loan from the Kröller-Müller Museum of the Netherlands. This begs the question of museums loaning out works. With vandals glueing themselves to, and pouring soup on historic artworks, why would a museum loan a priceless canvas to other art institutions? Artworks that are part of the cultural legacy of the Western world are not being kept safe from attack by eco-vandals. A stiff prison sentence for organizers who assail our cultural inheritance would do wonders. The museum commented on the vandalism:

“However important the climate message may be, art is defenseless, and actions that could lead to damage, for whatever purpose, the Kröller-Müller Museum strongly rejects.”

The eco-zealots and their apologists say that all targeted paintings have been “protected by glass,” but that’s a lie. On July 4, 2022 two cretins from Just Stop Oil, glued protest-art prints directly onto the surface of John Constable’s 1821 oil painting, The Hay Wain. The eco-vandals have succeeded only in creating an atmosphere where it’s too risky to loan out famous artworks; in other words they are holding historic art hostage. Italy’s Culture Minister Gennaro Sangiuliano repudiated Last Generation attacking The Sower, saying:

“Culture, which is a key part of our identity, should be defended and protected and not used as a megaphone for other forms of protest.

I’ve come here to stigmatize what I see as a very grave act. We are a democratic country that disciplines and makes possible all forms of protest. If you want to protest for the environment there are many ways, but you can’t damage an important artwork. Now justice will take its course. Luckily the work was well protected and I’m overjoyed that it was not seriously damaged.

We must work to make sure these things don’t happen above all by making young people understand that this is not the way to protest.”

It was reported on Nov. 7, 2022 that prosecutors in Rome have opened an investigation into the soup attack on Van Gogh’s The Sower. Italy’s Carabiniere national police force said the vandals responsible for the vandalism may face charges of “damaging, despoiling, vandalizing, and the illicit use of cultural goods.” The police added that the vandals face prison terms of up to five years.

From Nov. 6 to Nov. 18, 2022, bureaucrats from 200 countries will gather for the COP27 Climate Change Conference in Egypt. Joe Biden and “Special Presidential Envoy for Climate” John Kerry will attend to boast about crippling US energy independence and forcing Americans to buy $60,000 electronic vehicles with batteries that are only made in China. Should be a lot of fun, especially with all those carbon emissions spewing from jet planes bringing climate apparatchiks into Egypt. Big fun, I wonder if mega polluters Communist China and India will join the soirée.

The eco-extremists won’t bother to attend COP27 for a glue-athon in Egypt, since Egyptian authorities will make their stunt work a rather painful one-act performance. All the same, European museums might want to lock up tight, batten down the hatches, and brace themselves… because glue bearing barbarians have entered the Gates of the West.