[photogallerylink id=7452 align=left]After 1,500 people bought tickets to watch Grammy Award winning Erykah Badu perform in Malaysia, the artist was banned from performing in the country after some of her temporary tattoos offended some of the Muslim residents.
According to CBS, Malaysia’s information minister announced the cancellation of the show because “a promotional photo of Badu with the Arabic word for Allah painted on her bare shoulders was ‘an insult to Islam.’”
“It’s sad, because we traveled a long way,” Badu told a news conference. “But I’m totally understanding of (the minister’s) protection of the laws and its people. He doesn’t want anything to happen. I’m good with that.”
Her body art received criticism from both politicians and religious groups in the Muslim country after a newspaper published the photograph of her, with the tattoos, to promote the show.
CBS reports that, “The daily has since apologized for what it called an ‘oversight’ that led to the photo’s publication.”
The 41 year old singer said the art on her body “was inspired by images from ‘The Holy Mountain,’ a 1973 surrealist movie by Chilean-French filmmaker Alejandro Jodorowsky.”
“I think art is often misunderstood in the realm of religion, and it’s OK,” Badu said. “In America, it’s a lot different. Art is also misunderstood but it is not such a harsh gesture to promote the names of God. I am learning and understanding about Islam in other countries more as we travel.”
This past Tuesday, Malaysian Information Minister Rais Yatim said the worries that rose because of Badu’s photo “could jeopardize national security and cause a negative impact to the government’s image.”
The public reaction to the concert being banned has varies amongst the Malaysians. On Twitter, “many Malaysians, including Muslims, accused the government of intolerance, but others praised authorities for being firm about defending religious principles.”
Regardless of the incident, Badu said she would “absolutely” welcome another chance to perform in Malaysia in the future.