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Graffiti please, not scribbles!

A NOTICE on a wall in the Cuba Pavilion attracted the attention of Chinese visitors yesterday.

The notice, pasted on the graffiti wall designed for visitors to sign their names and draw on, was in Chinese only, and said: "No drawing on the walls!"

The piece of paper was surrounded by "Chinese-style" graffiti - scribbles telling of a heart-broken boy's unrequited love, phrases proving that one has been to the pavilion, even some advertisements for fake certifications, marriage partners, or diet pills with a mobile phone number - all a bit of a mess rather than an artistic creation.

A Chinese visitor took a picture of the notice and posted it on one of the country's biggest social networking websites, Most responses were ones apologizing for the mess created by Chinese visitors and expressing shame that the notice was only written in Chinese.

Mirtha Rippes Aller, director of the pavilion, took down the notice after Chinese reporters asked for her opinion about the scribbles, some even wondering if it was humiliation to Chinese visitors.

"We are only trying to redecorate the pavilion again so we put on the notice to tell them to stop drawing," said Aller.

Aller said although she encouraged visitors to draw freely on the walls just like people used to do in Cuba, she still preferred a pavilion which was clean and tidy.

The wall won't be available for writing or drawing on again until the final month of the event.


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