The issue is known upstream,

** Changed in: gnome-control-center (Ubuntu)
   Importance: Undecided => High

** Changed in: gnome-control-center (Ubuntu)
       Status: New => Triaged

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  Background > Desktop uses 2GB RAM and 20% Core i5-3320M

Status in gnome-control-center package in Ubuntu:

Bug description:
  Right-clicking on the desktop, then clicking Change Background, and
  then Desktop uses 2GB RAM and 20% of my Core i5-3320M. System Monitor
  3.28 (on Ubuntu 18.04) didn't do this. I have a lot of pictures in my
  Pictures folder which is why this happens (but didn't happen with
  3.28, I don't think!).

  I get errors like the below come up in the journal when it happens. If
  you need any more info to debug this then let me know! :)

  Oct 21 15:09:21 adam-thinkpad-t430 gnome-control-c[6541]: Failed to
  load picture '/home/adam/Pictures/Black_2_White_2_Rosa.png': Error
  opening file /home/adam/Pictures/Black_2_White_2_Rosa.png: Too many
  open files'

  ProblemType: Bug
  DistroRelease: Ubuntu 18.10
  Package: gnome-control-center 1:3.30.1-1ubuntu2
  ProcVersionSignature: Ubuntu 4.18.0-10.11-generic 4.18.12
  Uname: Linux 4.18.0-10-generic x86_64
  ApportVersion: 2.20.10-0ubuntu13
  Architecture: amd64
  CurrentDesktop: ubuntu:GNOME
  Date: Sun Oct 21 14:17:42 2018
  InstallationDate: Installed on 2017-08-03 (443 days ago)
  InstallationMedia: Ubuntu 17.04 "Zesty Zapus" - Release amd64 (20170412)
  SourcePackage: gnome-control-center
  UpgradeStatus: Upgraded to cosmic on 2018-10-21 (0 days ago)

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