Two women have been charged with vandalism after a can of soup was thrown at a valuable work of art.
Protesters from Just Stop Oil threw a can of Heinz at Vincent Van Gogh’s famous Sunflower painting at the National Gallery yesterday.
Video of the shocking stunt went viral on social media and two people were arrested at the scene after taping themselves to a wall.
Anna Holland, 20, of Newcastle, and Phoebe Plummer, 21, of Clapham, south London, have both been charged with criminal damage.
They are due to appear in Westminster Magistrates’ Court later today.
Footage from the scene showed one of the women chanting a rambling tirade beneath the painting, saying, “What is worth more, art of living?
“Is it worth more than food, worth more than justice?
“Are you more concerned about protecting a painting or protecting our planet and our people?
“The cost of living crisis is part of the cost of the oil crisis. Fuel is unaffordable for millions of cold hungry families.
“You can’t even afford to heat a can of soup,” they added, waving one of the two cans of soup.
Security guards escorted visitors out of room 43 of the gallery before closing the doors.
Lora Johnson, 38, of Southwold, was arrested and charged with a separate stunt by the same group.
A sign outside New Scotland Yard, the Metropolitan Police headquarters, was covered in orange paint yesterday afternoon, the latest in a series of stunts orchestrated by the group.
A spokesman for the National Gallery confirmed to Metro.co.uk that Sunflowers is now “on display again”.
They added: “Just after 11am this morning, two people entered room 43 of the National Gallery.
“The couple seemed glued to the wall next to Van Gogh’s ‘Sunflowers’ (1888). They also threw a red substance – what appears to be tomato soup – over the painting.
“Visitors cleared the room and the police were called. Now officials are on site.
“There is some minor damage to the frame, but the painting is undamaged.”
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https://metro.co.uk/2022/10/15/just-stop-oil-protester-charged-over-van-gogh-painting-stunt-17570014/ Just Stop Oil protester attacks Van Gogh stunt