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Activists Protest Oil Industry’s Museum Sponsorship in London

Coming on the heels of an occupation of Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall at the beginning of the summer, a new protest against art museum and culture sponsorship by the oil industry was coordinated across four London museums yesterday, according to Kevin Rawlinson at The Guardian. The demonstrations were organized by the Art Not Oil Coalition, which includes the activist group Liberate Tate that organized the Tate Modern occupation in June, and began yesterday morning at Tate Britain before moving onto the National Portrait Gallery, the Royal Opera House, and the British Museum where about 250 protestors gathered.

These particular institutions were targeted due to the fact that in December 2011, the directors of each organization held a joint press conference at the British Museum announcing a five-year, $15.4 million sponsorship arrangement with the oil company BP. This deal will expire by the end of next year, but the protestors would seem to be waging a campaign to move public opinion against the prospect of any extension of the funding.