These objects only present a snapshot of BP’s many forms of injustice and exploitation. Many other groups around the world are threatened by BP’s actions, and are on the front lines of resistance to their destructive practices. These activists, trade unionists and communities are present in other aspects of our work, and in the conversations we hope to inspire through this exhibition.
This arpillera reflects the Zapatista struggle in Mexico as an icon of community-based resistance and struggle. It denounces the more than 150,000 deaths and more than 26,000 disappearances that have occurred in the country during the so-called “War on Drugs”, particularly remembering the 43 disappeared students of Ayotzinapa.
West Papua has been under illegal Indonesian occupation since 1969. West Papuans are jailed for 15 years just for raising this flag. BP is operating right in the middle of this secret genocide, making millions of dollars for the Indonesian government while West Papuans are evicted from their ancestral homeland.
This lamp was rescued from landfill in Calder Valley during the extensive flooding of Boxing Day 2015. Local residents worked through electricity blackouts to load the ruined debris of their homes and businesses into a truck, fearful that further flooding could wash it all downstream.
Petcoke is a fuel used in manufacturing and burns much dirtier than coal, producing 10% more carbon dioxide. These pictures speak of disrespect and disregard for the local community which has borne the petcoke piles, with its dust blown into their homes, yards, and lungs - and also of BP's intention to demolish Marktown.
In May 2015, the PCS Union Culture Sector passed a motion officially condemning oil company sponsorship of cultural institutions. The motion was proposed by staff from National Museums Liverpool and passed overwhelmingly. This sunflower was used in the 2014-15 anti-privatisation campaign by workers at the National Gallery, which included 111 days of strike action.
BP is currently the largest foreign investor in Egypt, extracting oil and gas from beneath the Red Sea, Mediterranean and Nile Delta. This tear gas cartridge was retrieved when police fired it at protests in Cairo in 2011. Tear gas was one of many weapons used to control, contain and repress the protesters, causing severe eye and respiratory injuries. Over 40 Egyptians were killed due to tear gas inhalation during the uprisings.