Archive for category Johor Bahru

Johor MB Khaled should advise MBJB to end its “wild goose chase” and stop harassing tenants and landowners over cut-outs of Zacharevic wall graffiti which gives “vandalism” a good name

Johore Mentri Besar Datuk Mohamed Khaled Nordin said on Sunday that things might have turned out differently about street artist Lithuanian-born Ernest Zacharevic’s “high crime” street mural in Johor Baru if he had been asked the question by the press earlier, but the issue had become academic as the mural had been wiped out by the Johor Baru local authority.

This is a most extraordinary statement, considering that Zacharevic’s street mural had dominated not only Johor but national headlines for almost a week, and even hitting international coverage, before it was “white-washed” by JB city council workers.

Khaled must be the only potentate in Johor State blissfully unaware of the boiling controversy over Zacharevic’s “high crime” street mural in Johor Baru in the week before it was white-washed by JB council workers.

Could this be true, when DAP State Assemblywoman for Johor Jaya, Liow Cai Tong had even spoken on the subject in the Johor State Assembly during her debate on the 2014 Johor state budget and even tried to move an emergency debate on Zacha’s wall graffiti before it was “white-washed” by the JB council workers?
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JB mural clones spring up, even on T-shirts

Malaysiakini | 2:00PM Nov 16, 2013

The Johor Bahru City Council may have hastily removed the controversial mural depicting a lady about to be mugged, but it appears to have spawned at least 10 reincarnations of the increasingly popular artwork.

According to an anonymous local who spoke to Malaysiakini today, the lego character with the channel bag and the mugger around the corner have shown up on not just the city’s walls, but also on vans and even T-shirts.

He reported that people have put up stickers of the mural in Sutra Mall, Perling, Taman Molek and Bukit Indah among others.

Netizens have also posted their photos of the clones on Facebook, and one is even selling the T-shirts online.
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Mural mural on the wall

— Thomas Fann
The Malay Mail Online
November 16, 2013

In the same week that Super Typhoon Haiyan slammed into the Philippines, a different kind of storm came upon the southern city of Johor Bahru. It was a most innocuous beginning, a series of wall murals by an internationally-recognised Lithuanian-born street artist known as Ernest Zacharevic or simply Zachas. When it was first unveiled in early November it created a buzz among the local community. Many have long admired Zachas’ works for Penang and was delighted that he has finally brought it to JB, a city not known for its appreciation of the arts.

With news spreading of the existence of four murals around Taman Molek and Johor Jaya area, people began seeking out these works of art and to have their photos taken with them. My family and I joined in the search and snap trail. It was most amusing to find people snapping away at these murals in dirty back lanes of non-descript shophouses and treating them like treasures. Perhaps to a city that is like an art desert, it was a breath of arty fresh air that has finally blown in. Read the rest of this entry »

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Trending: Ernest Zacharevic, Malaysia’s answer to Banksy

By BBC Trending
What’s popular and why
13 November 2013 Last updated at 18:40

Malaysia has its own version of Banksy – street artist Ernest Zacharevic. His latest piece of work, which highlights the problem of crime, has been painted over by the authorities – but not before being widely shared on social media.

Across the water from wealthy Singapore is the Malaysian city of Johor Bahru, known as one of the country’s crime hot spots. Late last Thursday evening, 27-year-old street artist Ernest Zacharevic was at work on a wall there with his spray can. Zacharevic is from Lithuania but is a permanent resident of Malaysia, and is well-known in the region for his street art.
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The relevant authorities in JB must not “do nothing” but must use the controversy over Zachas’ “high-crime” mural to launch a new initiative to wipe out JB’s reputation as the nation’s crime capital

It is sad and tragic that while “unusual creativeness” are being exhibited to remove the “sting” of Lithuanian-born street artist Ernest Zacharevic’s “high crime” mural in Johor Bahru, there are no signs that the relevant authorities – JB City Council, the Police and Johore State Government – are being moved to capitalise on the heightened public awareness in the past week of unacceptably high crime rate in JB to launch a new initiative to wipe out JB’s reputation as the nation’s crime capital.

Two local artists had worked through midnight to add a Lego policeman armed with a handcuff to the controversial mural – a Lego man wearing a ski mask and holding a knife waiting to rob a Lego woman carrying a “Chanel” bag – but Zacharevic has dissociated himself from the addition with the comment on his Facbook that this is “a true vandalism”.

The authorities show a completely wrong sense of priorities, in expending energy on how to remove the “sting” of Zachas’ “high crime” mural in JB with various “creative” ideas to allow the “offensive” mural to remain in JB, when what is most important of all is for the authorities to take meaningful and effective action to ensure that JB becomes a low-crime city which is safe and secure for residents, visitors and investors. Read the rest of this entry »

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Cop ‘joins’ Zachas’ JB mural to ‘pounce’ on robber

By Aidila Razak | 11:59AM Nov 13, 2013

Local artists have added a Lego policeman to the controversial Johor Bahru mural by artist Ernest Zacharevic – a move that appears to soften the message and possibly, save the mural.

With his eyes set on a Lego woman carrying a Chanel handbag, the Lego mugger appears unaware that an police officer – complete with handcuffs – is ready to nab him.

It is unclear who the local artists behind the addition are, but according to the photograh uploaded by Zacharevic on his Facebook page, duo worked on the mural last night.

“Now that’s a true vandalism! Malaysia never fails to amuse me,” Zacharevic quipped in his caption.

A number of those commenting on the mural’s expansion were not too amused.
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Instead of removing Zachas’ “high crime” mural, it should be allowed to remain as a challenge to all relevant authorities to make JB low-crime and a standing testimony that high crime rate in JB is a “story of the past”

For the past few days, the relevant authorities in Johor Bahru including the Johor Bahru City Council, the Police and the Johor State Government had been most vexed and upset by one of three murals painted by internationally-recognised street artist Lithuanian-born Ernest Zacharevic highlighting the high crime rate in the city.

The city and people of Johor Bahru would have been the real beneficiaries if the energies expended on debating and deciding on what to do with Zachas’ mural of high crime rate in JB had been devoted to reducing the high crime rate in the Johor capital.

Instead of removing Zachas’ “high crime” mural, it should be allowed to remain to serve as a challenge to all relevant authorities to make JB low-crime and a standing testimony that high crime rate in JB is a “story of the past”!

The only way to remove the sting of Zachas’ “high crime” mural would be to remove JB’s notorious reputation as crime capital of the nation, when Zachas’ mural can become a tribute to the transformation of the Johore capital into a safe and secure city. Read the rest of this entry »