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RGB mural
Photograph: courtesy @jlovallo

A giant Ruth Bader Ginsburg mural is going up in the East Village

You can now order a print or t-shirt of the colorful collage of RGB just in time for the holidays.

Collier Sutter
Written by
Collier Sutter

New Yorkers are still reeling from the loss of Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a woman who did so much for gender equality.

While the city is officially honoring Ginsburg with a statue that will be going up in her native borough of Brooklyn, creatives across the city have taken the chance to honor her, from the 50th St. subway sign that was temporarily changed to “Ruth St.,” to her signature put on Wall Street’s Fearless Girl statue. This time, the ode to "The Notorious RGB" was done in paint. 

On November 10, a three-story-tall, vibrant mural celebrating her life achievements began going up in the heart of East Village, on the corner of 11th Street and 1st Avenue. Now, it's officially complete.

The collage of the Flatbush-born Justice is by a New York-based street artist named “Elle" and curated by the public art charity LISA Project NYC. The mural symbols representing her life, such as Lady Liberty and the Brooklyn Bridge. 

Once near completion, Elle posted the significance of the imagery she went with within her honorary painting. "RBG stands as the centerpiece of the mural...The Flowers to the bottom left are Black Eyed Susans, which represent justice. Above that, the Brooklyn Bridge- signifying her childhood borough. Above her head; hints of a crown composed of her many collars, as well as a gentle nod to Biggie, the namesake of her nickname Notorious RBG. The justice seemed to enjoy finding semblance with Biggie, as well as the nickname."

Elle also described that to the right of RGB's head, the turquoise swath depicts the interior of the Library of Congress ceiling. To RGB's right, you'll find a statue of The Contemplation of Justice, that currently sits outside of the Supreme Court house, originally carved by James Earle Fraser.

"[Fraser] claimed that the sculpture represented a realistic conception of what I consider a heroic type of person with a head and body expressive of the beauty and intelligence of justice."

Under the hand of that sculpture, are several cases that The Supreme Court Justice fought for, for a more equal America, including: Reed v Reed, United States vs Virginia, Windsor vs US and Hollingsworth, and Weinberger v. Wiesenfeld.

You'll also find a red swath of fabric floating across the painting in front of the Statue of Liberty, to signify a cape Wonderwoman might have worn, plus a banner that shows a quote by RBG, "Women belong in all places where decisions are being made.”

See the progression of the vibrant mural below.

"May this mural stand as a memory and a celebration of your life," Elle wrote in a post. "May we honor you legacy, tenacity, end ethos. We will celebrate your work that contributed to making America a country that offers more opportunity for all of us. You stand as our peaceful guardian, overseeing the streets of New York, and we are grateful for your work. Thank you RBG."

After an overwhelming response from RGB-fans across the country to the mural, Elle is now offering small prints, and t-shirts featuring the massive artwork. There are a variety of print sizes and hand-embellished limited edition options here. If you have a RGB fan in your life, you can get either shipped anywhere in the country before Christmas. 

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