King Charles III painting vandalized by animal rights activists

This photo shows an activist pasting a picture of a character called Wallace, from the “Wallace and Gromit” comedy series, over a portrait of Britain's King Charles III at the Philip Mould Gallery in London, Tuesday.

This photo shows an activist pasting a picture of a character called Wallace, from the “Wallace and Gromit” comedy series, over a portrait of Britain's King Charles III at the Philip Mould Gallery in London, Tuesday. (Animal Rising via AP)


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LONDON — Animal rights activists pasted a cartoon image over a portrait of King Charles III on Tuesday at a London art gallery, the latest in a series of incidents at U.K. museums as campaigners use vandalism to publicize their causes.

A group called Animal Rising shared a video of campaigners pasting a picture of a character called Wallace, from the "Wallace and Gromit" comedy series, over the king's head.

The so-called "comic redecoration" was designed to highlight an investigation that Animal Rising said found widespread violation of animal husbandry rules at farms approved by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

A speech bubble next to the head of Wallace read: "No cheese, Gromit. Look at all this cruelty on RSPCA farms!"

This photo shows a picture of a character pasted over a portrait of Britain's King Charles III at the Philip Mould Gallery in London, Tuesday. It's the latest in a series of incidents at U.K. museums as campaigners use vandalism to publicize their causes.
This photo shows a picture of a character pasted over a portrait of Britain's King Charles III at the Philip Mould Gallery in London, Tuesday. It's the latest in a series of incidents at U.K. museums as campaigners use vandalism to publicize their causes. (Photo: Animal Rising)

The painting is protected by a sheet of plastic and wasn't damaged, according to the Philip Mould Gallery, where it is on display.

The larger-than-life painting by Jonathan Yeo was unveiled last month and is the first portrait of Charles to be completed since he ascended the throne in 2022. It captures the king in shades of red with his hands clasped atop the hilt of his sword and a butterfly flitting above his right shoulder.

The portrait was commissioned to celebrate Charles' 50 years as a member of the Drapers' Company, which was set up more than 600 years ago as a trade association for wool merchants but is now primarily a philanthropic organization.

On May 10, two climate change protesters attacked the protective glass case housing an original copy of the Magna Carta at the British Library. The 800-year-old document, seen as one of the foundations of western democracy, wasn't damaged.

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