Many people have now realized that museums and other cultural institutions make things difficult for nature: Mega buildings with full air conditioning, streams of visitors from all over the world and global art transport have an impact on the climate balance, and the – more or less – post-pandemic desire to travel does the rest.
Does that mean it's going back to 2019?
At that time, the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation (SPK) consumed seventy million kilowatt hours of electricity, which is said to correspond to CO2 emissions of 30,000 tons, in order to arbitrarily pick out an institution that reported accordingly to the Federal Cultural Foundation.
A commuter with a mid-range car who drives forty kilometers a day supposedly weighs 1.4 tons per year.
But countermeasures are being taken: In the meantime, the SPK has vowed to become "climate neutral" by 2035 and formed a corresponding "task force".
As vague as some of the announcements are, one thing is clear: culture can no longer be communicated without a climate protection concept, not even in Great Britain.
Museums in London proudly report that they have greened the roofs of their old buildings and collected rainwater.
English climate activists, on the other hand, think that everything is far from enough – and they become violent.
At the Courtauld Gallery, two members of the Just Stop Oil activist group taped their hands to the frame of an 1889 painting by Vincent van Gogh depicting flowering peach trees in Provence.
They wanted to draw attention to the fact that the region of southern France, whose light and landscape inspired van Gogh, is now threatened by devastating droughts.
The day before, two other activists from the group had glued themselves to Horatio McCulloch's 1860 painting My Heart's in the Highlands at Glasgow's Kelvingrove Gallery, after spraying the floor and walls of the exhibition rooms.
And the latest prank was two activists attaching themselves to a large-scale landscape painting by William Turner in the Manchester Art Gallery, 'Thomson's Aeolian Harp, 1809, before being taken away by the police like their fellow campaigners in other cities.
The activists had sprayed the demand "no new oil" on the ground in front of the picture in Glasgow.
Climate protection trumps cultural protection, that's what it looks like, but the young people from "Just Stop Oil" don't want to be sorted like that.
Some of them study architecture or fine arts and say they consider the works of art "sacred" and, although they have only glued themselves to the frames up to now, they have accepted the damage they have done with their high-profile tape actions modeled on the group Extinction Rebellion to have.
But life is more sacred than art, and cultural institutions must join in civil disobedience against the power of the oil and gas companies and sluggish politics to finally end fossil fuels.
If everything were as simple as throwing a cake in the name of climate protection at the "Mona Lisa", which is fortunately secured behind glass,
Images are powerful, but aggressive symbolism like that of Just Stop Oil won't bring back the 19th-century landscapes either.
The only thing that will do is that museum security will have to be drastically tightened to prevent more attacks of this kind or worse.
Anyone who has to attack art to protect the climate is on the wrong track.Keywords: