Street art: Helsinki

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Street art: Helsinki’s deputy mayor’s graffiti escapades take a costly turn. Image: Paavo Arhinmäki / Facebook.

The tale of Paavo Arhinmäki, the deputy mayor of Helsinki who engaged in urban escapades by painting graffiti, took an unexpected turn.

Residents were shocked by his arrest last summer on charges of vandalism related to spray-painting the underpass near a railway section in his city.

Mr. Arhinmäki’s rebellious streak, while adding thrill to his leisure activities, ultimately led to legal consequences.

Recently, a district court ruled that he must pay a fine of €2,520 for his act of vandalism.

Despite the attention garnered by his graffiti, which featured the phrase “world domination and great career moves,” it did not attain viral fame like Banksy’s artworks.

Authorities swiftly removed the graffiti a few days after its creation, reportedly costing around €3,000 to clean up, exceeding the fine imposed.

In response to his arrest, Mr. Arhinmäki publicly apologised for his actions and pledged to bear any ensuing fines, demonstrating accountability.

He also sought to defend his artistic pursuits by explaining that the street artwork aimed to honour Pasila, the neighbourhood where many of his earlier youthful works originated.

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