Wall graffiti turning heads in Johor

JOHOR BARU - Wall graffiti by Lithuanian-born artist Ernest Zacharevic of a man holding a knife, apparently waiting for a female victim around the corner, has attracted people to Taman Molek here to snap photographs of the art.

Passers-by and even families with young children had been stopping their cars by the roadside to take quick shots of the graffiti painted on two walls along Jalan Molek 1/9.

Zacharevic had previously made the news when his art known as "Boy on a Bike" and "Little Children on a Bicycle" were painted on walls in Penang.

His two other paintings in Johor Baru included a couple looking at a large tree which Zacherevic cleverly drew around existing clumps of green moss and a painting of a water slide which leads to an actual pipe opening in Taman Johor Jaya.

Director of a printing company Jacky Choo, 41, who lives in the area, brought his nine-year-old daughter to check out the graffiti after he saw several postings of it on Facebook.

"Hopefully, this will inspire Malaysians to get more creative with art," he said.

The graffiti has sparked a debate especially among Netizens about the meaning behind the art.

There had been diverse opinions after a picture of the graffiti was posted on "What's Going On In Johor Baru", a page dedicated to state events.

Facebook user William H.K. Goh said that the art was done in rather bad taste.

"Surely Johor Baru deserves better than this negative portrayal. As a Johorean, I feel insulted," he said.

Johor Domestic Trade, ConĀ­suĀ­merism and Tourism exco Datuk Tee Siew Kiong also said that the painting of the knife-wielding man gave a negative image, especially for tourists. However, he added that it was up to the local authorities to decide whether it wanted to repaint the wall.