Photographer Nan Goldin and nearly 100 other demonstrators staged a protest over the weekend against a Big Pharma donor’s contribution to the Metropolitan Museum of Art by dumping mock pill bottles into the moat at the Temple of Dendur.
The 2,000-year-old temple is located in the museum’s Sackler wing, which was named for brothers Arthur, Mortimer and Raymond Sackler. The family owns Purdue Pharmaceuticals, which makes and aggressively markets its prescription painkiller OxyContin. The drug’s active ingredient, oxycodone, is among the most common painkillers in prescription opioid deaths.
Protesters shouted “shame on the Sacklers” as they tossed the pill bottles, which were labeled: “Prescribed to you by the Sackler Family,” The Guardian reported. Demonstrators also demanded that the family fund drug treatment for addicts.
“In the name of the dead, Sackler family, Purdue Pharma. Hear our demands. Use your profits. Save our lives,” said Goldin per ARTNews.
At the end of the demonstration, the protesters lay on the ground and staged an opioid overdose “die in.”