Justin Bieber’s graffiti on the wall of a hotel on Australia’s Gold Coast has incurred the wrath of a mayor and a city council, but united the hotel’s owners and one of Hollywood’s greatest actors in praise.
The 19-year-old singer is currently on the last lap of his Believe tour and is moving through dates Down Under.
The QT hotel on the Gold Coast has said it gave permission to Bieber and his crew to spray-paint an assortment of fluorescent cartoon faces, a Pacman ghost and abstract shapes on the external wall of their tennis grounds on Wednesday morning and that they are delighted with it.
Bieber later posted a photo of his handiwork to his Instagram page, which has racked up 570,000 “Likes” from his fans.
In response to media requests, the hotel released a statement that read:
“Whilst unable to comment while Justin Bieber was staying in the resort due to privacy reasons, the property can now state that it was a coup for the hotel to have Justin want to paint a piece of art in appreciation of his stay.
“This piece of art is now available to be viewed by fans of the artist and we believe that it is a wonderful addition to the colourful Gold Coast arts scene.”
(Photo: Justin Bieber/Instagram)
The QT Hotel underscored their approval by updating their Facebook page cover photograph with a picture of Justin in a boxers-type garb next to a snap of one of his graffiti designs, with a caption that read: “He asked, and we said YES.”
However, Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate and the city’s council say there is a “zero tolerance” policy to graffiti in the city. Among the numerous interviews Tate has given to the media, he slammed Bieber’s actions as “really, really silly” and said he doesn’t want young people to see “graffiti glorified.”
In addition, a council spokesman told AAP: “It might be on private land but its in prominent public view. The mayor will be contacting our compliance officers today to have a notice issued to the hotel to clean it up.”
A possibly grandstanding Tate also tweeted the “Baby” singer, writing, “Glad you had a great time on Australia’s Gold Coast. Hope to see you back soon to clean up your mess. Make me a Belieber.”
Meanwhile, New Zealand-born Crowe who is based in Australia has defended the Biebs.
Taking to Twitter on Thursday, the 49-year-old wrote,
I like Beibers tagging. Tag on little brother. Tag the world.
— Russell Crowe (@russellcrowe) November 28, 2013
The QT Hotel appear unfazed by the city council’s ultimatum and have launched an online search for local graffiti artists to contribute their own designs to the Bieber’s wall in a bid to promote great things about Australia’s Gold Coast and graffiti as a valid art form.
Describing Justin as “a lovely young guy” on their Facebook page, the hotel stressed the teen star asked for permission beforehand, adding,
“We can’t imagine why people think that being a superstar means you stop asking permission.”
“Sure, you get extra swag on the way, but he was a pleasure to take care of. Just once we would like to be able to celebrate how nice most of these superstars are when they stay with us.”
As of press time, Bieber has already taken to Sydney’s Allphones Arena stage for the first of two concerts.
Judging by this comical snap he uploaded to his shots social media account, he appears in good spirits despite the graffiti furor.