When are art spaces the right venue for political action?
As a gay man who was active in ACT UP in the 1980s, I am particularly sympathetic to these sort of actions. I remember the outrage when in December of 1989, ACT UP made history with a massive protest at St. Patrick's Cathedral. 5000 people protested the Roman Catholic Archdiocese's public stand against AIDS education and condom distribution, and its opposition to a women's right to abortion by having a "Die In", lying prone in the aisles and in the asp of the church. It certainly got the world's attention.
I don’t condone criminal damage but I am on board with the urgent need to address the climate emergency. How you bring it to people’s attention without spectacle I don’t know. I thought the young women who were involved in the Van Gogh incident in London were thoughtful and eloquent in their explanations of what they chose to do and why. I also wrote about this on my substack last week. Damaging art in political protest has a long and interesting history.