10/11/2022
Discussions
Shani Haquin Gerade
Climate Justice and Iconoclasm
In the first of our series of articles to mark COP27, we take a look at the recent climate protests targeting famous works of art…

It seems that everyone is discussing this. They are angry, populists, furious and proud. The Mona Lisa at the Louvre, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers at the National Gallery, Monet’s Les Meules in Potsdam, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer at Mauritshuis museum, John Constable's ‘The Hay Wain’ at the National Gallery, Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper painting at the Royal Academy of Arts and Goya's painting at the Prado; this is just a short list of some of Western art history's greatest paintings that have recently been attacked and vandalised by climate change activists to raise awareness about the coming disaster.

Protestors with Monet's Les Meules at Germany's Barberini Museum

“What will the value of art be in the future if you can't even eat?” screamed one of the activists after vandalising Van Gogh's Sunflower painting at the National Gallery in London with tomato soup, perhaps a reference to the iconic work by Warhol. Another protester,  Mirjam Herrmann, argued to the prejudicial crowd that “People are starving. People are freezing. People are dying. We are in a climate catastrophe and all you are afraid of is tomato soup or mashed potatoes on a painting. This painting is not going to be worth anything if we have to fight over food. When will you finally start to listen? When will you finally start to listen and stop business as usual?”. Indeed, interesting and important questions. Sadly, this text has become arguable to many people, after they have considered the context it was stated at; whilst throwing mashed potato on Monet's 1890 painting, 'Meuleswork' which depicts scattered haystacks in a field at sunrise. 

What is the core of this act; a symbolic and brave gesture of a nonconformist iconoclasm? An antagonistic and shallow provocation? Or possibly both? To answer this, we could begin with a short investigation of the idea of iconoclasm. In the past, iconoclasm has been used to describe both the religiously motivated destruction of art, and the nonconformist one, who challenged beliefs or institutions. 

Just Stop Oil protestors with Constable's Hay Wain at The National Gallery

It is not the first time 'iconoclasm' has been used as a form of social protest. As a response and protest against the suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst's arrest in 1914, Mary Richardson swung a meat cleaver at the Rokeby Venus by Velazquez in the National Gallery, leaving five slashes in the canvas. 65 years later, Tony Shafrazi spray-painted Picasso's 1937 painting Guernica, which hung in the Museum of Modern Art, with the words "KILL LIES ALL" in foot-high letters. He deliberately wrote the confusing phrase, "KILL LIES ALL" instead of "ALL LIES KILL", as a reference to James Joyce's novel Finnegans Wake, so that it could be read from any direction. When a guard finally grabbed him, Shafrazi shouted, "Call the curator. I am an artist."  His motivation was his objecting to the release of a US officer who’d been convicted over the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

What is the effectiveness of iconoclasm as a protest? The uneasy truth is that there is probably very little chance that this gesture will change people's minds, or more significantly, push them into real actions. Researchers at Toronto and Stanford Universities showed some volunteers articles about peaceful marches while other volunteers were shown stories more related to violent gestures, such as a break-in at an animal testing lab. Respondents said they had less in common with campaigners who went for extreme measures and felt less goodwill towards their cause because they believed they were immoral. Gestures like these, empty of content and populist, may raise awareness of a group, but they don't recruit people to their ideas.

Just Stop Oil protestors with Van Gogh's Sunflowers at the National Gallery

Moreover, in the context of vandalising iconic artworks, people seem more concerned about their opinions about the act of 'iconoclasm,' rather than the coming catastrophe caused by global warming. After all, this act did not lead to public conversations about the future destruction of cities, lands, food, and water crises, but rather about 'iconoclasm'. Ultimately, however, it is worth noting that most of the artworks targeted were protected by glass and screens; could it be argued that these actions have in fact brought the cause of Just Stop Oil to public attention while free from any actual iconoclasm?

And what would Van Gogh himself say about this gesture? It is hard to tell, but we could observe his adoration and appreciation of nature by considering his view that ‘It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality is more important than the feeling for pictures’.

Thanks for reading
Collect your 5 yamos below
REDEEM YAMOS
10/11/2022
Discussions
Shani Haquin Gerade
Climate Justice and Iconoclasm
In the first of our series of articles to mark COP27, we take a look at the recent climate protests targeting famous works of art…

It seems that everyone is discussing this. They are angry, populists, furious and proud. The Mona Lisa at the Louvre, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers at the National Gallery, Monet’s Les Meules in Potsdam, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer at Mauritshuis museum, John Constable's ‘The Hay Wain’ at the National Gallery, Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper painting at the Royal Academy of Arts and Goya's painting at the Prado; this is just a short list of some of Western art history's greatest paintings that have recently been attacked and vandalised by climate change activists to raise awareness about the coming disaster.

Protestors with Monet's Les Meules at Germany's Barberini Museum

“What will the value of art be in the future if you can't even eat?” screamed one of the activists after vandalising Van Gogh's Sunflower painting at the National Gallery in London with tomato soup, perhaps a reference to the iconic work by Warhol. Another protester,  Mirjam Herrmann, argued to the prejudicial crowd that “People are starving. People are freezing. People are dying. We are in a climate catastrophe and all you are afraid of is tomato soup or mashed potatoes on a painting. This painting is not going to be worth anything if we have to fight over food. When will you finally start to listen? When will you finally start to listen and stop business as usual?”. Indeed, interesting and important questions. Sadly, this text has become arguable to many people, after they have considered the context it was stated at; whilst throwing mashed potato on Monet's 1890 painting, 'Meuleswork' which depicts scattered haystacks in a field at sunrise. 

What is the core of this act; a symbolic and brave gesture of a nonconformist iconoclasm? An antagonistic and shallow provocation? Or possibly both? To answer this, we could begin with a short investigation of the idea of iconoclasm. In the past, iconoclasm has been used to describe both the religiously motivated destruction of art, and the nonconformist one, who challenged beliefs or institutions. 

Just Stop Oil protestors with Constable's Hay Wain at The National Gallery

It is not the first time 'iconoclasm' has been used as a form of social protest. As a response and protest against the suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst's arrest in 1914, Mary Richardson swung a meat cleaver at the Rokeby Venus by Velazquez in the National Gallery, leaving five slashes in the canvas. 65 years later, Tony Shafrazi spray-painted Picasso's 1937 painting Guernica, which hung in the Museum of Modern Art, with the words "KILL LIES ALL" in foot-high letters. He deliberately wrote the confusing phrase, "KILL LIES ALL" instead of "ALL LIES KILL", as a reference to James Joyce's novel Finnegans Wake, so that it could be read from any direction. When a guard finally grabbed him, Shafrazi shouted, "Call the curator. I am an artist."  His motivation was his objecting to the release of a US officer who’d been convicted over the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

What is the effectiveness of iconoclasm as a protest? The uneasy truth is that there is probably very little chance that this gesture will change people's minds, or more significantly, push them into real actions. Researchers at Toronto and Stanford Universities showed some volunteers articles about peaceful marches while other volunteers were shown stories more related to violent gestures, such as a break-in at an animal testing lab. Respondents said they had less in common with campaigners who went for extreme measures and felt less goodwill towards their cause because they believed they were immoral. Gestures like these, empty of content and populist, may raise awareness of a group, but they don't recruit people to their ideas.

Just Stop Oil protestors with Van Gogh's Sunflowers at the National Gallery

Moreover, in the context of vandalising iconic artworks, people seem more concerned about their opinions about the act of 'iconoclasm,' rather than the coming catastrophe caused by global warming. After all, this act did not lead to public conversations about the future destruction of cities, lands, food, and water crises, but rather about 'iconoclasm'. Ultimately, however, it is worth noting that most of the artworks targeted were protected by glass and screens; could it be argued that these actions have in fact brought the cause of Just Stop Oil to public attention while free from any actual iconoclasm?

And what would Van Gogh himself say about this gesture? It is hard to tell, but we could observe his adoration and appreciation of nature by considering his view that ‘It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality is more important than the feeling for pictures’.

Thanks for reading
Collect your 5 yamos below
REDEEM YAMOS
10/11/2022
Discussions
Shani Haquin Gerade
Climate Justice and Iconoclasm
In the first of our series of articles to mark COP27, we take a look at the recent climate protests targeting famous works of art…

It seems that everyone is discussing this. They are angry, populists, furious and proud. The Mona Lisa at the Louvre, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers at the National Gallery, Monet’s Les Meules in Potsdam, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer at Mauritshuis museum, John Constable's ‘The Hay Wain’ at the National Gallery, Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper painting at the Royal Academy of Arts and Goya's painting at the Prado; this is just a short list of some of Western art history's greatest paintings that have recently been attacked and vandalised by climate change activists to raise awareness about the coming disaster.

Protestors with Monet's Les Meules at Germany's Barberini Museum

“What will the value of art be in the future if you can't even eat?” screamed one of the activists after vandalising Van Gogh's Sunflower painting at the National Gallery in London with tomato soup, perhaps a reference to the iconic work by Warhol. Another protester,  Mirjam Herrmann, argued to the prejudicial crowd that “People are starving. People are freezing. People are dying. We are in a climate catastrophe and all you are afraid of is tomato soup or mashed potatoes on a painting. This painting is not going to be worth anything if we have to fight over food. When will you finally start to listen? When will you finally start to listen and stop business as usual?”. Indeed, interesting and important questions. Sadly, this text has become arguable to many people, after they have considered the context it was stated at; whilst throwing mashed potato on Monet's 1890 painting, 'Meuleswork' which depicts scattered haystacks in a field at sunrise. 

What is the core of this act; a symbolic and brave gesture of a nonconformist iconoclasm? An antagonistic and shallow provocation? Or possibly both? To answer this, we could begin with a short investigation of the idea of iconoclasm. In the past, iconoclasm has been used to describe both the religiously motivated destruction of art, and the nonconformist one, who challenged beliefs or institutions. 

Just Stop Oil protestors with Constable's Hay Wain at The National Gallery

It is not the first time 'iconoclasm' has been used as a form of social protest. As a response and protest against the suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst's arrest in 1914, Mary Richardson swung a meat cleaver at the Rokeby Venus by Velazquez in the National Gallery, leaving five slashes in the canvas. 65 years later, Tony Shafrazi spray-painted Picasso's 1937 painting Guernica, which hung in the Museum of Modern Art, with the words "KILL LIES ALL" in foot-high letters. He deliberately wrote the confusing phrase, "KILL LIES ALL" instead of "ALL LIES KILL", as a reference to James Joyce's novel Finnegans Wake, so that it could be read from any direction. When a guard finally grabbed him, Shafrazi shouted, "Call the curator. I am an artist."  His motivation was his objecting to the release of a US officer who’d been convicted over the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

What is the effectiveness of iconoclasm as a protest? The uneasy truth is that there is probably very little chance that this gesture will change people's minds, or more significantly, push them into real actions. Researchers at Toronto and Stanford Universities showed some volunteers articles about peaceful marches while other volunteers were shown stories more related to violent gestures, such as a break-in at an animal testing lab. Respondents said they had less in common with campaigners who went for extreme measures and felt less goodwill towards their cause because they believed they were immoral. Gestures like these, empty of content and populist, may raise awareness of a group, but they don't recruit people to their ideas.

Just Stop Oil protestors with Van Gogh's Sunflowers at the National Gallery

Moreover, in the context of vandalising iconic artworks, people seem more concerned about their opinions about the act of 'iconoclasm,' rather than the coming catastrophe caused by global warming. After all, this act did not lead to public conversations about the future destruction of cities, lands, food, and water crises, but rather about 'iconoclasm'. Ultimately, however, it is worth noting that most of the artworks targeted were protected by glass and screens; could it be argued that these actions have in fact brought the cause of Just Stop Oil to public attention while free from any actual iconoclasm?

And what would Van Gogh himself say about this gesture? It is hard to tell, but we could observe his adoration and appreciation of nature by considering his view that ‘It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality is more important than the feeling for pictures’.

Thanks for reading
Collect your 5 yamos below
REDEEM YAMOS
10/11/2022
Discussions
Shani Haquin Gerade
Climate Justice and Iconoclasm
In the first of our series of articles to mark COP27, we take a look at the recent climate protests targeting famous works of art…

It seems that everyone is discussing this. They are angry, populists, furious and proud. The Mona Lisa at the Louvre, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers at the National Gallery, Monet’s Les Meules in Potsdam, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer at Mauritshuis museum, John Constable's ‘The Hay Wain’ at the National Gallery, Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper painting at the Royal Academy of Arts and Goya's painting at the Prado; this is just a short list of some of Western art history's greatest paintings that have recently been attacked and vandalised by climate change activists to raise awareness about the coming disaster.

Protestors with Monet's Les Meules at Germany's Barberini Museum

“What will the value of art be in the future if you can't even eat?” screamed one of the activists after vandalising Van Gogh's Sunflower painting at the National Gallery in London with tomato soup, perhaps a reference to the iconic work by Warhol. Another protester,  Mirjam Herrmann, argued to the prejudicial crowd that “People are starving. People are freezing. People are dying. We are in a climate catastrophe and all you are afraid of is tomato soup or mashed potatoes on a painting. This painting is not going to be worth anything if we have to fight over food. When will you finally start to listen? When will you finally start to listen and stop business as usual?”. Indeed, interesting and important questions. Sadly, this text has become arguable to many people, after they have considered the context it was stated at; whilst throwing mashed potato on Monet's 1890 painting, 'Meuleswork' which depicts scattered haystacks in a field at sunrise. 

What is the core of this act; a symbolic and brave gesture of a nonconformist iconoclasm? An antagonistic and shallow provocation? Or possibly both? To answer this, we could begin with a short investigation of the idea of iconoclasm. In the past, iconoclasm has been used to describe both the religiously motivated destruction of art, and the nonconformist one, who challenged beliefs or institutions. 

Just Stop Oil protestors with Constable's Hay Wain at The National Gallery

It is not the first time 'iconoclasm' has been used as a form of social protest. As a response and protest against the suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst's arrest in 1914, Mary Richardson swung a meat cleaver at the Rokeby Venus by Velazquez in the National Gallery, leaving five slashes in the canvas. 65 years later, Tony Shafrazi spray-painted Picasso's 1937 painting Guernica, which hung in the Museum of Modern Art, with the words "KILL LIES ALL" in foot-high letters. He deliberately wrote the confusing phrase, "KILL LIES ALL" instead of "ALL LIES KILL", as a reference to James Joyce's novel Finnegans Wake, so that it could be read from any direction. When a guard finally grabbed him, Shafrazi shouted, "Call the curator. I am an artist."  His motivation was his objecting to the release of a US officer who’d been convicted over the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

What is the effectiveness of iconoclasm as a protest? The uneasy truth is that there is probably very little chance that this gesture will change people's minds, or more significantly, push them into real actions. Researchers at Toronto and Stanford Universities showed some volunteers articles about peaceful marches while other volunteers were shown stories more related to violent gestures, such as a break-in at an animal testing lab. Respondents said they had less in common with campaigners who went for extreme measures and felt less goodwill towards their cause because they believed they were immoral. Gestures like these, empty of content and populist, may raise awareness of a group, but they don't recruit people to their ideas.

Just Stop Oil protestors with Van Gogh's Sunflowers at the National Gallery

Moreover, in the context of vandalising iconic artworks, people seem more concerned about their opinions about the act of 'iconoclasm,' rather than the coming catastrophe caused by global warming. After all, this act did not lead to public conversations about the future destruction of cities, lands, food, and water crises, but rather about 'iconoclasm'. Ultimately, however, it is worth noting that most of the artworks targeted were protected by glass and screens; could it be argued that these actions have in fact brought the cause of Just Stop Oil to public attention while free from any actual iconoclasm?

And what would Van Gogh himself say about this gesture? It is hard to tell, but we could observe his adoration and appreciation of nature by considering his view that ‘It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality is more important than the feeling for pictures’.

Thanks for reading
Collect your 5 yamos below
REDEEM YAMOS
10/11/2022
Discussions
Shani Haquin Gerade
Climate Justice and Iconoclasm
In the first of our series of articles to mark COP27, we take a look at the recent climate protests targeting famous works of art…

It seems that everyone is discussing this. They are angry, populists, furious and proud. The Mona Lisa at the Louvre, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers at the National Gallery, Monet’s Les Meules in Potsdam, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer at Mauritshuis museum, John Constable's ‘The Hay Wain’ at the National Gallery, Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper painting at the Royal Academy of Arts and Goya's painting at the Prado; this is just a short list of some of Western art history's greatest paintings that have recently been attacked and vandalised by climate change activists to raise awareness about the coming disaster.

Protestors with Monet's Les Meules at Germany's Barberini Museum

“What will the value of art be in the future if you can't even eat?” screamed one of the activists after vandalising Van Gogh's Sunflower painting at the National Gallery in London with tomato soup, perhaps a reference to the iconic work by Warhol. Another protester,  Mirjam Herrmann, argued to the prejudicial crowd that “People are starving. People are freezing. People are dying. We are in a climate catastrophe and all you are afraid of is tomato soup or mashed potatoes on a painting. This painting is not going to be worth anything if we have to fight over food. When will you finally start to listen? When will you finally start to listen and stop business as usual?”. Indeed, interesting and important questions. Sadly, this text has become arguable to many people, after they have considered the context it was stated at; whilst throwing mashed potato on Monet's 1890 painting, 'Meuleswork' which depicts scattered haystacks in a field at sunrise. 

What is the core of this act; a symbolic and brave gesture of a nonconformist iconoclasm? An antagonistic and shallow provocation? Or possibly both? To answer this, we could begin with a short investigation of the idea of iconoclasm. In the past, iconoclasm has been used to describe both the religiously motivated destruction of art, and the nonconformist one, who challenged beliefs or institutions. 

Just Stop Oil protestors with Constable's Hay Wain at The National Gallery

It is not the first time 'iconoclasm' has been used as a form of social protest. As a response and protest against the suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst's arrest in 1914, Mary Richardson swung a meat cleaver at the Rokeby Venus by Velazquez in the National Gallery, leaving five slashes in the canvas. 65 years later, Tony Shafrazi spray-painted Picasso's 1937 painting Guernica, which hung in the Museum of Modern Art, with the words "KILL LIES ALL" in foot-high letters. He deliberately wrote the confusing phrase, "KILL LIES ALL" instead of "ALL LIES KILL", as a reference to James Joyce's novel Finnegans Wake, so that it could be read from any direction. When a guard finally grabbed him, Shafrazi shouted, "Call the curator. I am an artist."  His motivation was his objecting to the release of a US officer who’d been convicted over the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

What is the effectiveness of iconoclasm as a protest? The uneasy truth is that there is probably very little chance that this gesture will change people's minds, or more significantly, push them into real actions. Researchers at Toronto and Stanford Universities showed some volunteers articles about peaceful marches while other volunteers were shown stories more related to violent gestures, such as a break-in at an animal testing lab. Respondents said they had less in common with campaigners who went for extreme measures and felt less goodwill towards their cause because they believed they were immoral. Gestures like these, empty of content and populist, may raise awareness of a group, but they don't recruit people to their ideas.

Just Stop Oil protestors with Van Gogh's Sunflowers at the National Gallery

Moreover, in the context of vandalising iconic artworks, people seem more concerned about their opinions about the act of 'iconoclasm,' rather than the coming catastrophe caused by global warming. After all, this act did not lead to public conversations about the future destruction of cities, lands, food, and water crises, but rather about 'iconoclasm'. Ultimately, however, it is worth noting that most of the artworks targeted were protected by glass and screens; could it be argued that these actions have in fact brought the cause of Just Stop Oil to public attention while free from any actual iconoclasm?

And what would Van Gogh himself say about this gesture? It is hard to tell, but we could observe his adoration and appreciation of nature by considering his view that ‘It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality is more important than the feeling for pictures’.

Thanks for reading
Collect your 5 yamos below
REDEEM YAMOS
10/11/2022
Discussions
Shani Haquin Gerade
Climate Justice and Iconoclasm

It seems that everyone is discussing this. They are angry, populists, furious and proud. The Mona Lisa at the Louvre, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers at the National Gallery, Monet’s Les Meules in Potsdam, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer at Mauritshuis museum, John Constable's ‘The Hay Wain’ at the National Gallery, Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper painting at the Royal Academy of Arts and Goya's painting at the Prado; this is just a short list of some of Western art history's greatest paintings that have recently been attacked and vandalised by climate change activists to raise awareness about the coming disaster.

Protestors with Monet's Les Meules at Germany's Barberini Museum

“What will the value of art be in the future if you can't even eat?” screamed one of the activists after vandalising Van Gogh's Sunflower painting at the National Gallery in London with tomato soup, perhaps a reference to the iconic work by Warhol. Another protester,  Mirjam Herrmann, argued to the prejudicial crowd that “People are starving. People are freezing. People are dying. We are in a climate catastrophe and all you are afraid of is tomato soup or mashed potatoes on a painting. This painting is not going to be worth anything if we have to fight over food. When will you finally start to listen? When will you finally start to listen and stop business as usual?”. Indeed, interesting and important questions. Sadly, this text has become arguable to many people, after they have considered the context it was stated at; whilst throwing mashed potato on Monet's 1890 painting, 'Meuleswork' which depicts scattered haystacks in a field at sunrise. 

What is the core of this act; a symbolic and brave gesture of a nonconformist iconoclasm? An antagonistic and shallow provocation? Or possibly both? To answer this, we could begin with a short investigation of the idea of iconoclasm. In the past, iconoclasm has been used to describe both the religiously motivated destruction of art, and the nonconformist one, who challenged beliefs or institutions. 

Just Stop Oil protestors with Constable's Hay Wain at The National Gallery

It is not the first time 'iconoclasm' has been used as a form of social protest. As a response and protest against the suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst's arrest in 1914, Mary Richardson swung a meat cleaver at the Rokeby Venus by Velazquez in the National Gallery, leaving five slashes in the canvas. 65 years later, Tony Shafrazi spray-painted Picasso's 1937 painting Guernica, which hung in the Museum of Modern Art, with the words "KILL LIES ALL" in foot-high letters. He deliberately wrote the confusing phrase, "KILL LIES ALL" instead of "ALL LIES KILL", as a reference to James Joyce's novel Finnegans Wake, so that it could be read from any direction. When a guard finally grabbed him, Shafrazi shouted, "Call the curator. I am an artist."  His motivation was his objecting to the release of a US officer who’d been convicted over the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

What is the effectiveness of iconoclasm as a protest? The uneasy truth is that there is probably very little chance that this gesture will change people's minds, or more significantly, push them into real actions. Researchers at Toronto and Stanford Universities showed some volunteers articles about peaceful marches while other volunteers were shown stories more related to violent gestures, such as a break-in at an animal testing lab. Respondents said they had less in common with campaigners who went for extreme measures and felt less goodwill towards their cause because they believed they were immoral. Gestures like these, empty of content and populist, may raise awareness of a group, but they don't recruit people to their ideas.

Just Stop Oil protestors with Van Gogh's Sunflowers at the National Gallery

Moreover, in the context of vandalising iconic artworks, people seem more concerned about their opinions about the act of 'iconoclasm,' rather than the coming catastrophe caused by global warming. After all, this act did not lead to public conversations about the future destruction of cities, lands, food, and water crises, but rather about 'iconoclasm'. Ultimately, however, it is worth noting that most of the artworks targeted were protected by glass and screens; could it be argued that these actions have in fact brought the cause of Just Stop Oil to public attention while free from any actual iconoclasm?

And what would Van Gogh himself say about this gesture? It is hard to tell, but we could observe his adoration and appreciation of nature by considering his view that ‘It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality is more important than the feeling for pictures’.

Thanks for reading
Collect your 5 yamos below
REDEEM YAMOS
10/11/2022
Discussions
Shani Haquin Gerade
Climate Justice and Iconoclasm
In the first of our series of articles to mark COP27, we take a look at the recent climate protests targeting famous works of art…

It seems that everyone is discussing this. They are angry, populists, furious and proud. The Mona Lisa at the Louvre, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers at the National Gallery, Monet’s Les Meules in Potsdam, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer at Mauritshuis museum, John Constable's ‘The Hay Wain’ at the National Gallery, Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper painting at the Royal Academy of Arts and Goya's painting at the Prado; this is just a short list of some of Western art history's greatest paintings that have recently been attacked and vandalised by climate change activists to raise awareness about the coming disaster.

Protestors with Monet's Les Meules at Germany's Barberini Museum

“What will the value of art be in the future if you can't even eat?” screamed one of the activists after vandalising Van Gogh's Sunflower painting at the National Gallery in London with tomato soup, perhaps a reference to the iconic work by Warhol. Another protester,  Mirjam Herrmann, argued to the prejudicial crowd that “People are starving. People are freezing. People are dying. We are in a climate catastrophe and all you are afraid of is tomato soup or mashed potatoes on a painting. This painting is not going to be worth anything if we have to fight over food. When will you finally start to listen? When will you finally start to listen and stop business as usual?”. Indeed, interesting and important questions. Sadly, this text has become arguable to many people, after they have considered the context it was stated at; whilst throwing mashed potato on Monet's 1890 painting, 'Meuleswork' which depicts scattered haystacks in a field at sunrise. 

What is the core of this act; a symbolic and brave gesture of a nonconformist iconoclasm? An antagonistic and shallow provocation? Or possibly both? To answer this, we could begin with a short investigation of the idea of iconoclasm. In the past, iconoclasm has been used to describe both the religiously motivated destruction of art, and the nonconformist one, who challenged beliefs or institutions. 

Just Stop Oil protestors with Constable's Hay Wain at The National Gallery

It is not the first time 'iconoclasm' has been used as a form of social protest. As a response and protest against the suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst's arrest in 1914, Mary Richardson swung a meat cleaver at the Rokeby Venus by Velazquez in the National Gallery, leaving five slashes in the canvas. 65 years later, Tony Shafrazi spray-painted Picasso's 1937 painting Guernica, which hung in the Museum of Modern Art, with the words "KILL LIES ALL" in foot-high letters. He deliberately wrote the confusing phrase, "KILL LIES ALL" instead of "ALL LIES KILL", as a reference to James Joyce's novel Finnegans Wake, so that it could be read from any direction. When a guard finally grabbed him, Shafrazi shouted, "Call the curator. I am an artist."  His motivation was his objecting to the release of a US officer who’d been convicted over the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

What is the effectiveness of iconoclasm as a protest? The uneasy truth is that there is probably very little chance that this gesture will change people's minds, or more significantly, push them into real actions. Researchers at Toronto and Stanford Universities showed some volunteers articles about peaceful marches while other volunteers were shown stories more related to violent gestures, such as a break-in at an animal testing lab. Respondents said they had less in common with campaigners who went for extreme measures and felt less goodwill towards their cause because they believed they were immoral. Gestures like these, empty of content and populist, may raise awareness of a group, but they don't recruit people to their ideas.

Just Stop Oil protestors with Van Gogh's Sunflowers at the National Gallery

Moreover, in the context of vandalising iconic artworks, people seem more concerned about their opinions about the act of 'iconoclasm,' rather than the coming catastrophe caused by global warming. After all, this act did not lead to public conversations about the future destruction of cities, lands, food, and water crises, but rather about 'iconoclasm'. Ultimately, however, it is worth noting that most of the artworks targeted were protected by glass and screens; could it be argued that these actions have in fact brought the cause of Just Stop Oil to public attention while free from any actual iconoclasm?

And what would Van Gogh himself say about this gesture? It is hard to tell, but we could observe his adoration and appreciation of nature by considering his view that ‘It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality is more important than the feeling for pictures’.

Thanks for reading
Collect your 5 yamos below
REDEEM YAMOS
10/11/2022
Discussions
Shani Haquin Gerade
Climate Justice and Iconoclasm
In the first of our series of articles to mark COP27, we take a look at the recent climate protests targeting famous works of art…

It seems that everyone is discussing this. They are angry, populists, furious and proud. The Mona Lisa at the Louvre, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers at the National Gallery, Monet’s Les Meules in Potsdam, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer at Mauritshuis museum, John Constable's ‘The Hay Wain’ at the National Gallery, Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper painting at the Royal Academy of Arts and Goya's painting at the Prado; this is just a short list of some of Western art history's greatest paintings that have recently been attacked and vandalised by climate change activists to raise awareness about the coming disaster.

Protestors with Monet's Les Meules at Germany's Barberini Museum

“What will the value of art be in the future if you can't even eat?” screamed one of the activists after vandalising Van Gogh's Sunflower painting at the National Gallery in London with tomato soup, perhaps a reference to the iconic work by Warhol. Another protester,  Mirjam Herrmann, argued to the prejudicial crowd that “People are starving. People are freezing. People are dying. We are in a climate catastrophe and all you are afraid of is tomato soup or mashed potatoes on a painting. This painting is not going to be worth anything if we have to fight over food. When will you finally start to listen? When will you finally start to listen and stop business as usual?”. Indeed, interesting and important questions. Sadly, this text has become arguable to many people, after they have considered the context it was stated at; whilst throwing mashed potato on Monet's 1890 painting, 'Meuleswork' which depicts scattered haystacks in a field at sunrise. 

What is the core of this act; a symbolic and brave gesture of a nonconformist iconoclasm? An antagonistic and shallow provocation? Or possibly both? To answer this, we could begin with a short investigation of the idea of iconoclasm. In the past, iconoclasm has been used to describe both the religiously motivated destruction of art, and the nonconformist one, who challenged beliefs or institutions. 

Just Stop Oil protestors with Constable's Hay Wain at The National Gallery

It is not the first time 'iconoclasm' has been used as a form of social protest. As a response and protest against the suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst's arrest in 1914, Mary Richardson swung a meat cleaver at the Rokeby Venus by Velazquez in the National Gallery, leaving five slashes in the canvas. 65 years later, Tony Shafrazi spray-painted Picasso's 1937 painting Guernica, which hung in the Museum of Modern Art, with the words "KILL LIES ALL" in foot-high letters. He deliberately wrote the confusing phrase, "KILL LIES ALL" instead of "ALL LIES KILL", as a reference to James Joyce's novel Finnegans Wake, so that it could be read from any direction. When a guard finally grabbed him, Shafrazi shouted, "Call the curator. I am an artist."  His motivation was his objecting to the release of a US officer who’d been convicted over the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

What is the effectiveness of iconoclasm as a protest? The uneasy truth is that there is probably very little chance that this gesture will change people's minds, or more significantly, push them into real actions. Researchers at Toronto and Stanford Universities showed some volunteers articles about peaceful marches while other volunteers were shown stories more related to violent gestures, such as a break-in at an animal testing lab. Respondents said they had less in common with campaigners who went for extreme measures and felt less goodwill towards their cause because they believed they were immoral. Gestures like these, empty of content and populist, may raise awareness of a group, but they don't recruit people to their ideas.

Just Stop Oil protestors with Van Gogh's Sunflowers at the National Gallery

Moreover, in the context of vandalising iconic artworks, people seem more concerned about their opinions about the act of 'iconoclasm,' rather than the coming catastrophe caused by global warming. After all, this act did not lead to public conversations about the future destruction of cities, lands, food, and water crises, but rather about 'iconoclasm'. Ultimately, however, it is worth noting that most of the artworks targeted were protected by glass and screens; could it be argued that these actions have in fact brought the cause of Just Stop Oil to public attention while free from any actual iconoclasm?

And what would Van Gogh himself say about this gesture? It is hard to tell, but we could observe his adoration and appreciation of nature by considering his view that ‘It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality is more important than the feeling for pictures’.

Thanks for reading
Collect your 5 yamos below
REDEEM YAMOS
10/11/2022
Discussions
Shani Haquin Gerade
Climate Justice and Iconoclasm
In the first of our series of articles to mark COP27, we take a look at the recent climate protests targeting famous works of art…

It seems that everyone is discussing this. They are angry, populists, furious and proud. The Mona Lisa at the Louvre, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers at the National Gallery, Monet’s Les Meules in Potsdam, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer at Mauritshuis museum, John Constable's ‘The Hay Wain’ at the National Gallery, Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper painting at the Royal Academy of Arts and Goya's painting at the Prado; this is just a short list of some of Western art history's greatest paintings that have recently been attacked and vandalised by climate change activists to raise awareness about the coming disaster.

Protestors with Monet's Les Meules at Germany's Barberini Museum

“What will the value of art be in the future if you can't even eat?” screamed one of the activists after vandalising Van Gogh's Sunflower painting at the National Gallery in London with tomato soup, perhaps a reference to the iconic work by Warhol. Another protester,  Mirjam Herrmann, argued to the prejudicial crowd that “People are starving. People are freezing. People are dying. We are in a climate catastrophe and all you are afraid of is tomato soup or mashed potatoes on a painting. This painting is not going to be worth anything if we have to fight over food. When will you finally start to listen? When will you finally start to listen and stop business as usual?”. Indeed, interesting and important questions. Sadly, this text has become arguable to many people, after they have considered the context it was stated at; whilst throwing mashed potato on Monet's 1890 painting, 'Meuleswork' which depicts scattered haystacks in a field at sunrise. 

What is the core of this act; a symbolic and brave gesture of a nonconformist iconoclasm? An antagonistic and shallow provocation? Or possibly both? To answer this, we could begin with a short investigation of the idea of iconoclasm. In the past, iconoclasm has been used to describe both the religiously motivated destruction of art, and the nonconformist one, who challenged beliefs or institutions. 

Just Stop Oil protestors with Constable's Hay Wain at The National Gallery

It is not the first time 'iconoclasm' has been used as a form of social protest. As a response and protest against the suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst's arrest in 1914, Mary Richardson swung a meat cleaver at the Rokeby Venus by Velazquez in the National Gallery, leaving five slashes in the canvas. 65 years later, Tony Shafrazi spray-painted Picasso's 1937 painting Guernica, which hung in the Museum of Modern Art, with the words "KILL LIES ALL" in foot-high letters. He deliberately wrote the confusing phrase, "KILL LIES ALL" instead of "ALL LIES KILL", as a reference to James Joyce's novel Finnegans Wake, so that it could be read from any direction. When a guard finally grabbed him, Shafrazi shouted, "Call the curator. I am an artist."  His motivation was his objecting to the release of a US officer who’d been convicted over the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

What is the effectiveness of iconoclasm as a protest? The uneasy truth is that there is probably very little chance that this gesture will change people's minds, or more significantly, push them into real actions. Researchers at Toronto and Stanford Universities showed some volunteers articles about peaceful marches while other volunteers were shown stories more related to violent gestures, such as a break-in at an animal testing lab. Respondents said they had less in common with campaigners who went for extreme measures and felt less goodwill towards their cause because they believed they were immoral. Gestures like these, empty of content and populist, may raise awareness of a group, but they don't recruit people to their ideas.

Just Stop Oil protestors with Van Gogh's Sunflowers at the National Gallery

Moreover, in the context of vandalising iconic artworks, people seem more concerned about their opinions about the act of 'iconoclasm,' rather than the coming catastrophe caused by global warming. After all, this act did not lead to public conversations about the future destruction of cities, lands, food, and water crises, but rather about 'iconoclasm'. Ultimately, however, it is worth noting that most of the artworks targeted were protected by glass and screens; could it be argued that these actions have in fact brought the cause of Just Stop Oil to public attention while free from any actual iconoclasm?

And what would Van Gogh himself say about this gesture? It is hard to tell, but we could observe his adoration and appreciation of nature by considering his view that ‘It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality is more important than the feeling for pictures’.

Thanks for reading
Collect your 5 yamos below
REDEEM YAMOS
10/11/2022
Discussions
Shani Haquin Gerade
Climate Justice and Iconoclasm
In the first of our series of articles to mark COP27, we take a look at the recent climate protests targeting famous works of art…

It seems that everyone is discussing this. They are angry, populists, furious and proud. The Mona Lisa at the Louvre, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers at the National Gallery, Monet’s Les Meules in Potsdam, Girl with a Pearl Earring by Vermeer at Mauritshuis museum, John Constable's ‘The Hay Wain’ at the National Gallery, Leonardo da Vinci's The Last Supper painting at the Royal Academy of Arts and Goya's painting at the Prado; this is just a short list of some of Western art history's greatest paintings that have recently been attacked and vandalised by climate change activists to raise awareness about the coming disaster.

Protestors with Monet's Les Meules at Germany's Barberini Museum

“What will the value of art be in the future if you can't even eat?” screamed one of the activists after vandalising Van Gogh's Sunflower painting at the National Gallery in London with tomato soup, perhaps a reference to the iconic work by Warhol. Another protester,  Mirjam Herrmann, argued to the prejudicial crowd that “People are starving. People are freezing. People are dying. We are in a climate catastrophe and all you are afraid of is tomato soup or mashed potatoes on a painting. This painting is not going to be worth anything if we have to fight over food. When will you finally start to listen? When will you finally start to listen and stop business as usual?”. Indeed, interesting and important questions. Sadly, this text has become arguable to many people, after they have considered the context it was stated at; whilst throwing mashed potato on Monet's 1890 painting, 'Meuleswork' which depicts scattered haystacks in a field at sunrise. 

What is the core of this act; a symbolic and brave gesture of a nonconformist iconoclasm? An antagonistic and shallow provocation? Or possibly both? To answer this, we could begin with a short investigation of the idea of iconoclasm. In the past, iconoclasm has been used to describe both the religiously motivated destruction of art, and the nonconformist one, who challenged beliefs or institutions. 

Just Stop Oil protestors with Constable's Hay Wain at The National Gallery

It is not the first time 'iconoclasm' has been used as a form of social protest. As a response and protest against the suffragette Emmeline Pankhurst's arrest in 1914, Mary Richardson swung a meat cleaver at the Rokeby Venus by Velazquez in the National Gallery, leaving five slashes in the canvas. 65 years later, Tony Shafrazi spray-painted Picasso's 1937 painting Guernica, which hung in the Museum of Modern Art, with the words "KILL LIES ALL" in foot-high letters. He deliberately wrote the confusing phrase, "KILL LIES ALL" instead of "ALL LIES KILL", as a reference to James Joyce's novel Finnegans Wake, so that it could be read from any direction. When a guard finally grabbed him, Shafrazi shouted, "Call the curator. I am an artist."  His motivation was his objecting to the release of a US officer who’d been convicted over the My Lai massacre in Vietnam.

What is the effectiveness of iconoclasm as a protest? The uneasy truth is that there is probably very little chance that this gesture will change people's minds, or more significantly, push them into real actions. Researchers at Toronto and Stanford Universities showed some volunteers articles about peaceful marches while other volunteers were shown stories more related to violent gestures, such as a break-in at an animal testing lab. Respondents said they had less in common with campaigners who went for extreme measures and felt less goodwill towards their cause because they believed they were immoral. Gestures like these, empty of content and populist, may raise awareness of a group, but they don't recruit people to their ideas.

Just Stop Oil protestors with Van Gogh's Sunflowers at the National Gallery

Moreover, in the context of vandalising iconic artworks, people seem more concerned about their opinions about the act of 'iconoclasm,' rather than the coming catastrophe caused by global warming. After all, this act did not lead to public conversations about the future destruction of cities, lands, food, and water crises, but rather about 'iconoclasm'. Ultimately, however, it is worth noting that most of the artworks targeted were protected by glass and screens; could it be argued that these actions have in fact brought the cause of Just Stop Oil to public attention while free from any actual iconoclasm?

And what would Van Gogh himself say about this gesture? It is hard to tell, but we could observe his adoration and appreciation of nature by considering his view that ‘It is not the language of painters but the language of nature which one should listen to, the feeling for the things themselves, for reality is more important than the feeling for pictures’.

Thanks for reading
Collect your 5 yamos below
REDEEM YAMOS
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