BEDFORD-STUYVESANT — They’re representing B-K to the fullest.
A new mural in Bedford-Stuyvesant pays tribute to legendary rapper Notorious B.I.G. courtesy of a local arts organization.
The massive installation on the corner of Bedford Avenue and Quincy Street gives a nod to the emcee’s old stomping grounds and aims to draw attention to “Biggie’s Brooklyn,” according to the artist.
“I see how the neighborhood is changing — and there’s nothing wrong with change, Brooklyn is for everybody,” said artist Naoufal Alaoui, also known as "Rocko."
“But it’s my responsibility to make sure Brooklyn is still alive, and we have to keep it for what it’s known for, what we’re proud of. Brooklyn is Biggie.”
Rocko, who works with community art collective Spread Art NYC, started work on the 38-foot-high mural on Friday with the help of collaborator Scott "Zimer" Zimmerman.
The idea for the artwork had been two years in the making, he said.
Giant letters read “King of NY” with a crown sitting atop the late rapper’s head.
Complete with a giant portrait of Biggie Smalls and gold and red calligraphy showcasing his lyrics, the piece transforms the façade of the red brick building into an homage to the hip-hop legend’s origins.
The intersection at Bedford Avenue and Quincy Street was a frequent hangout for the young rapper, also known as Christopher Wallace, according to Rocko.
The Brooklyn native rose to fame in the mid-'90s and was shot to death in Los Angeles in 1997.
During the days of his budding career, he performed with local groups like the Old Gold Brothers, according to reports.
His lyrics referencing the group and their days in Bed-Stuy from his demo, "Microphone Murderer," adorn the mural wall, along with those from other songs.
"B.I.G. down with OGB. Old Gold Brothers for the others that missed me. The crew stay deep on Bedford and Quincy," the artwork reads.
OGB members and DJ 50 Grand, who helped bring the rapper to the limelight, stopped by over the weekend to celebrate the work-in-progress, Rocko said.
As he and Zimer continued work on the mural Monday, locals and passersby stopped to compliment the developing piece and give their seal of approval.
Rocko anticipates the mural to be complete by the end of the week.
“We want this to be for everyone that loves Brooklyn, anyone that loves Biggie," he said.
“We want it to be a monument where people can come to take photos and enjoy. We want his legacy to live forever.”