Thursday, June 24, 2010

Artists Boycott BP Support of Tate Gallery in UK

I've been asked by my friend in England, James Marriott of PLATFORM, a collaborative Arts Organization that has worked for many years on projects to stop harmful extraction practices by BP and Shell Oil in the Niger Delta and the Canadian tar sands, to inform my artist friends and blog followers of their current protest action. It is directed towards halting cultural institutions like the Tate Gallery and the National Gallery from accepting corporate support from these companies in the future. If you are interested in participating, you can check out their website for more info. PLATFORM will be publishing a letter in The Guardian, which you are invited by James to sign. If you would like to sign on to this letter, to be published on June 28th, please email


Dear Suzi,

Next Monday, the Tate will celebrate 20 years of BP sponsorship at an exclusive summer party, The Guardian reports today. BP executives will enjoy cocktails with curators and artists at the Tate Britain, even as crude oil continues to wreak havoc on the Gulf of Mexico.

Today, Platform launches ‘licence to spill’, a new publication that explains why we think cultural sponsorship by oil companies like BP and Shell is unacceptable.

Faced with the devastating impacts of oil extraction on rights, the environment and climate change, the Tate and other major cultural players are turning a blind eye.

This summer, the Tate has the chance to re-consider their deal with BP – details of which have been kept a secret. Public scrutiny and pressure will be a decisive factor in their decisions. You can email your opposition to BP's sponsorship of the Tate to:

Nicholas Serota (Head of Tate)
Penelope Curtis (Head of Tate Britain)
Judith Nesbitt (Chief Curator at Tate Britain)
Rebecca Williams (Head of Department - Tate)

Please copy in on any correspondence.

No comments: