Climate Protesters Vandalize Monet Painting

Climate change protesters in Sweden were arrested after allegedly smearing paint on a painting by French Impressionist painter Claude Monet. The activists were also caught on film attempting to glue their hands to the painting, in the latest of a string of vandalism attacks against classic works of art.

The events occurred Wednesday in Sweden’s National Museum at Monet’s “The Artist’s Garden at Giverny.” The vandals were members of the environmental group Restore Wetlands, which stated that the two Swedish women’s actions were meant to pressure the Swedish government to reduce its greenhouse emissions.

“The situation is urgent,” one of the women said. “As a nurse, I refuse to watch. The pandemic was nothing compared to the climate collapse. It’s about life or death.”

“People won’t just die from heat stroke,” she continued. “New diseases will spread, and we cannot even imagine the extent of this.”

The museum called the police after the two activists glued their hands to the painting, which was encased in glass. The museum featured it as part of its “The Garden — Six Centuries of Art and Nature” exhibit.

The museum condemned the action of the vandals, saying in a statement that it distanced itself “from actions where art or cultural heritage are put at risk of damage.” 

“Cultural heritage has great symbolic value and it is unacceptable to attack or destroy it, for any purpose whatsoever,” the museum said.

The museum is determining whether or not the incident left the painting with any damage.

The latest vandalism is part of an ongoing trend by environmental activists against classic works of art.

Last October, several activists were arrested in London for pouring tomato soup on a painting by Dutch artist Vincent van Gogh. 

The organization responsible for the incident, Just Stop Oil, questioned what use art was “when we face the collapse of civil society.”

The group then called for artists and “the art-loving public” to engage in “Civil Resistance if they want to live in a world where humans are around to appreciate art.”