2022-11-24 16:29:23

How Do You Tell a Vandal From a Visitor? Art Museums Are Struggling.

Logo The New York Times
The New York Times
By Alex Marshall

Its not easy to stop a determined climate protester, museum directors say, even as they fear for their masterpieces.

LONDON For Hans-Peter Wipplinger, the director of Viennas Leopold Museum, the last few weeks have been challenging. As climate protesters across Europe stepped up their attacks against art, Wipplinger took measures to protect his storied collection, which includes famous paintings by Gustav Klimt and Egon Schiele. Bags were banned; coats, too. The museum hired extra guards to patrol its five floors.

It didnt work. Last week, members of a group called Last Generation walked into the museum and threw black liquid at one of Klimts major works, Death and Life. A protester had sneaked the liquid into the museum in a hot water bottle strapped to his chest, Wipplinger said.

The Klimt, protected by glass, was unharmed. But Wipplinger said his security team could only have stopped the attack by subjecting visitors to invasive body searches, like at the airport. He didnt want to even consider that prospect, he added.

Continue read on nytimes.com

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