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Activist Group Occupies Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall

Last Saturday, a group of activists known as Liberate Tate occupied the Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall to protest against Tate’s sponsorship by the oil and gas company BP, reports Lorena Muñoz-Alonso at Artnet. Protesters covered the hall’s concrete floor with quotes from books and reports about or on climate change, all written in charcoal.

The group has staged fourteen performances in total at Tate Modern and Tate Britain, including pouring oil on a naked man throwing £240,000 in fake money notes from Tate Britain’s members room to the main entrance. Some of their performances have been announced to the Tate in advance, though this weekend’s was not. The artists stayed working overnight in the museum despite threats from the Tate to call police, and left around noon the next day. Last January, after a legal battle initiated by Liberate Tate regarding a freedom of information request, Tate revealed the scale of BP’s support and disclosed that, between 1990 and 2006, it received between $233,000 and $513,000 roughly per year from BP, which is 0.5 percent of the institution's annual budget.